Traincrash suspect seeking sympathy

GLENDALE, Calif., Feb. 18 (UPI) -- The California man who left his vehicle in the path of a commuter train that crashed and killed 11 people was trying to get his wife's sympathy, police say.

Juan Manuel Alvarez, 25, deliberately parked his Jeep Grand Cherokee on the tracks and poured gasoline inside and outside the vehicle to create a "spectacular" scene to gain his wife's sympathy, said Lt. Jon Perkins of the Glendale police.


"He had a number of choices to make. He could have torched himself, laid on the tracks, put the car on the tracks, but he didn't choose any of those. We believe that this was nothing more than an attention-getting model to have his wife take him back. I don't think he ever intended to kill himself."

The Jan. 26 crash left 11 dead and nearly 200 injured.

During Alvarez's arraignment Tuesday, prosecutors added arson charges to the 11 counts of murder with special circumstances already filed. He has pleaded not guilty.

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