Platteville, CO – A freight train struck a Platteville police car that was parked on the train tracks with a handcuffed woman trapped in the back, and the whole terrifying incident was captured on video (video below).
The Fort Lupton Police Department released bodycam and dashcam video on Friday of the incident that occurred at about 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 16 on the railroad tracks near U.S. 85 and Weld 38 in Weld County, the Denver Post reported.
Shortly before that, Fort Lupton police had received a call about a road rage incident involving a gun.
A Platteville police officer pulled over the suspect’s vehicle and 20-year-old Yareni Rios-Gonzalez stopped her truck just past the railroad tracks on Weld 38, the Denver Post reported.
The officer stopped his car behind the suspect’s pickup with his vehicle on the train tracks.
Bodycam and dashcam video released on Sept. 23 showed two Fort Lupton police officers arrived on the scene to back up the Platteville police officer, the Denver Post reported.
Officers were able to talk Rios-Gonzalez out of her pickup truck, handcuffed her, and then put her in the back of the Platteville patrol vehicle parked on the tracks while they searched her vehicle.
Video shows the Platteville officer and a Fort Lupton officer checked Rios-Gonzalez’s vehicle for other passengers, and then searched it for the gun she had reportedly brandished during the alleged road-rage incident, the Denver Post reported.
The other Fort Lupton officer returned to the patrol car where Rios-Gonzalez was being held and stood by holding a rifle.
The video showed the officers near the suspect’s vehicle were discussing whether the Rios-Gonzalez might have tossed her gun out the window when the first train horn can be heard in the distance.
But it took those officers at least 15 seconds to notice the train actually headed their way, the Denver Post reported.
As the sound of the train’s horn got louder, one officer asked “Is that Hart?”
“No, that’s uh… time check?” the female officer searching the car with him looked at her watch. “Oh s—t. Oh my God. Oh my God!”
The video showed the officer started toward the vehicle parked on the tracks.
“Move your car!” the other officer can be heard yelling in the video.
Then he yelled “stay back!”
Video showed the officer standing next to the patrol unit parked on the tracks heard the train’s horn and spun in a circle trying to figure out where it was coming from.
It appeared he realized the train was headed for them at the last second and he stepped away from the car about one second before the train slammed into it, dashcam video showed.
The video showed the train hit the Platteville police car with its front passenger door still open and Rios-Gonzalez handcuffed in the back, the Denver Post reported.
The train smashed into the patrol vehicle and pushed it a distance down the tracks with the suspect still inside it, the video showed.
Officers immediately called for help and reported that the suspect had been inside the patrol car when it was struck by the Union Pacific train, the Denver Post reported.
“Get us medical, emergent,” an officer told the dispatcher. “The suspect was in the vehicle that was hit by the train.”
Video showed the officers running to wrecked patrol unit to help Rios-Gonzalez.
None of the train crew or the officers were injured by the crash, but the handcuffed suspect sustained serious injuries, the Denver Post reported.
Rios-Gonzalez suffered multiples broken bones and a head injury from the crash, KMGH reported.
“She has a broken arm that she has had surgery on, nine broken ribs, a fractured sternum, broken teeth, injuries to her leg, back, and head,” her attorney, Paul Wilkinson, told reporters.
Wilkinson said the video showed the officers heard the train coming and did nothing to save his handcuffed client, KMGH reported.
“The most alarming thing for me is that you can hear the train coming,” he said. “And it’s at nighttime, and the train has lights also, so you can both hear and see the train coming.”
Wilkinson said Rios-Gonzalez knew what was happening but couldn’t do anything to save herself, KMGH reported.
“She was trying to get their attention,” he explained. “She was yelling. She was trying to escape.”
Watch the incident unfold in the video below: