UPDATE: No Reason Yet Known Why Woman Stopped Car on Train Tracks

The driver killed in Friday night's Metra accident on Gilbert Avenue has been identified as a Chicago woman.

La Grange police said on Monday that they do not yet know why a was stopped on the Burlington Northern Railroad tracks at Gilbert Avenue (between La Grange and Western Springs) where it was hit by a train at about 5:54 p.m. Feb. 10.   

The driver has been identified as Maria G. Hinojosa, 57, of the 3000 block of S. Keeler Avenue in Chicago.

The matter still is under investigation, police investigator Ken Uher said on Monday.

No information was available that day from the Cook County medical examiner’s office about her death.

Daniel February 17, 2012 at 02:57 AM
Darren, as I stated in my comment, the medical examiner was not at the scene......so stating in court that she was suicidal would not hold water one bit. A medical examiner can tell you 'Cause of Death'. That she died of mutiple injuries as cause of death, yes this is factual.......no brainer there,.....she was struck by a train. I agree with police officials. What facts does the medical examiner have that they dont to make that assumption? My 'Rage' as you would put it, is simply more of a concern as to why you, the editors, would label this woman as suicidal to your readers when in fact the police are still investigating. Yes I do understand you have a 'medical examiner' give you this information but is that enough for you to write her off as suicidal? Do you not ask or care what led the medical examiner to believe this. Or is this simply enough for you to go ahead write her off that way. I understand you are writing & stating facts that are given to you........but my question is, why do you headline suicide without supporting facts even from a medical examiner. Sounds more like hearsay. I feel as a reader that update was poorly headlined in the matter that you led others belive that this woman committed suicide without explaining facts.
JK February 17, 2012 at 02:42 PM
Great link! From there I was able to find SEVEN reports of incidents in LaGrange, IL, and THREE reports in Western Springs, IL of Train Vs Car/Pedestrian, dating back to 1992! 6 of them were trespass/suicides. Also, this case is the first recorded accident (on that database, and I couldn't find any other news links) AT THAT CROSSING. We're talking about tens of millions of cars crossing with about a half million trains going past in the last decade (I'd say about 1/3 of those trains express @ 55MPH+ through the area). One incident. I have a couple serious questions for you. 1) Are you from LaGrange or the surrounding area, and if so, how long have you been in the area? 2) If not, where are you from (a general location, you don't need to disclose of course), I'd like to check that database to see if the accident rate is higher in your area. 3) Did something happen to you or a loved one as the result of a faulty crossing symbol, gate, etc.?
JK February 18, 2012 at 12:45 AM
Where on earth are you getting your numbers from? Without a source they are TOTALLY invalid. Also, you avoided my questions. They are totally relevant. LaGrange is a train town. It's part of the culture, and everyone respects the fact that they will kill you, which is why the accidental death rate is Almost non-existent.
Amy February 22, 2012 at 05:27 AM
I understand Daniels anger and I too am angry that this was deemed a suicide without any other evidence other than the medical examiner. He is right the medical examiner wasnt there so they couldnt know that. If any of you repoters had known this woman personally you would know that she wasnt suicidal! And for those of us who did know her she had alot to live for ! There was family that she left behind so maybe instead of printing articles that are NOT factual you should be investigating and then printing whats factual.
Darren McRoy February 22, 2012 at 05:59 AM
Amy, our report is factual--we wrote only that the Examiner's Office has made this designation, and that the LGPD has doubts, or is at least surprised. We are indeed staying on the separate LGPD investigation. If the investigation conclusively shows something different, then the Examiner's Office will look very bad for giving a premature and false designation to the media.


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