3 Americans Thwart Gunman on Train in France
Three heroic Americans overpowered a gunman on a train in France yesterday afternoon.
Sacramento State University senior Anthony Sadler, Air Force serviceman Spencer Stone and National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos were on a train that was traveling between Amsterdam and Paris when they heard a gunshot and glass shattering.
They jumped into action, tackling and disarming the suspect.
Authorities now say that the suspect traveled to Syria and had been flagged by Spanish investigators as a potential jihadist.
"If the identity he has declared is confirmed, he is a 26-year-old man of Moroccan nationality identified by the Spanish authorities to French intelligence services in February 2014 because of his connections to the radical Islamist movement," French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said.
The gunman didn’t fire his weapon but wounded one man with a handgun and the other with a blade, said Philippe Lorthiois, an official with the Alliance police union.
The suspect is a 26-year-old Moroccan, according to Sliman Hamzi, an official with the Alliance police union who spoke on French television i-Tele.
Europe's major rail stations, such as Paris' Gare du Nord and Brussels' Gare du Midi, are patrolled by soldiers armed with rifles, but passengers can board most high-speed trains without passing through metal detectors or having their bags searched or showing their passports.
Shaken passengers from the train that was attacked arrived early Saturday at Paris' Gare du Nord train station, several hours later than scheduled. They were greeted by a large group of SNCF staff with water and meals and help finding hotels and taxis.