Naperville Amtrak shooting suspect to have mental evaluation
A DuPage County judge has ordered a mental fitness evaluation for the 79-year-old Wisconsin man charged with the May 16 shooting of an Amtrak conductor in Naperville.
Edward Klein, 79, of West Allis, Wisconsin, is being held on $1.5 million bail. Klein is charged with the aggravated battery and attempted murder of 45-year-old Michael Case, of Homewood.
Assistant Public Defender Jennifer Maples told Judge Daniel Guerin Thursday that she had a "bona fide doubt of (Klein's) fitness" after meeting with him for 90 minutes on May 19 in the DuPage County jail.
As Guerin was ordering the mental evaluation, Klein, who was handcuffed to a wheelchair, spoke up.
"You know I was an officer in the U.S. Army?" Klein asked.
As Guerin continued, Klein spoke up again.
"Do what you have to do, sir," Klein said.
Guerin set Klein's next court date for June 28, in hopes of having a report from the doctor who will evaluate Klein.
Prosecutors said Klein, who had served in Federal Protective Services, a branch of Homeland Security, was unhappy with his living situation at a Wisconsin assisted-living facility and had made plans to take a train to visit a friend in Las Vegas. But at some point on May 15, Klein got the attention of a conductor and told him he no longer wanted to go to Vegas.
They said Klein became upset when he was told he couldn't exit the train until Kansas City, where he could get a return ticket to Milwaukee.
Klein did just that, but not before causing a disturbance over a delay in Kansas City. At some point, Amtrak staff members realized Klein may have been in need of assistance and contacted other officials to meet Klein at Union Station and assist him in getting back to Milwaukee and ultimately to his living facility.
Prosecutors said the train made a scheduled stop in Naperville after 4:30 p.m. Tuesday when Klein became argumentative and attempted to get off the train.
The conductor, aware there was a plan in place to escort Klein at Union Station, closed the train doors to keep the "enraged and belligerent" Klein on the train. At that point, Klein reached out an open window and fired a single shot at Case before he was detained by fellow passengers.
Prosecutors said Klein told police he threw the gun out the window but it was later found in his pocket. She said Klein told police, "I built up all this anger and I just blew him away."