CHICAGO (CBS) — A man has been charged with attempted murder of a transit employee in the shooting of a CTA bus driver downtown over the weekend.
Dennis Green, 38, was also charged with aggravated battery of a transit employee, possession of a firearm with a defaced serial number, and being an armed habitual criminal.READ MORE: As Jury Deliberates In R. Kelly Sex Trafficking Case, What Impact Will Verdict Have On His Future Trials In Chicago?
In the Saturday night incident, police said the bus driver was physically attacked and was then shot in the jaw. The shooting happened at Washington Street and Garland Court around 9 p.m., a short distance west of Michigan Avenue and Millennium Park and right outside the Chicago Cultural Center.
As CBS 2’s Jermont Terry reported, we have learned that when the No. 20 Madison bus pulled up to its last stop at Michigan Avenue, all passengers were required to get off. Yet when the bus driver said, “It’s the end of the line,” the passenger became so upset that he confronted the bus operator and went on to shoot him.
“This is a cry to all drivers to get home safely,” said Keith Hill, president of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 241.
It was a simple request to get the off the bus at the end of the route. Hill said the passenger refused.
“He didn’t want to get off the bus. He exchanged words with the driver,” Hill said. “Then, it led to altercation where my member got shot.”
While the passenger, identified as Green, is accused of having the gun on board, CBS 2 has learned the driver was not shot on the bus.READ MORE: Cook County Circuit Court Website Back Online, After Weeks-Long Outage Caused By Breach
“He shot at the head of my driver,” Hill said. “It wasn’t an accident. It was attempted murder.”
The 34-year-old driver has been employed with the Chicago Transit Authority for three years. Saturday night in the Loop, the bus driver could not finish his shift – instead, the loving father and husband was rushed to the hospital with a gunshot wound.
“From the North Side to the South Side, from the lake all the way to Harlem, everybody deserves safety,” Hill said. “Damn sure my drivers deserve to be safe while we’re earning a living.”
Hill and his 10,000 transit union members have been demanding better security since the start of the summer.
“We don’t know who or what we’re picking up,” he said. “We don’t know what they have on them.”
Hill said it is time to get officers riding on the buses.
“When is enough going to be enough?” he said. “We’re not going to lose a life. We will take drastic action before we lose a life.”MORE NEWS: Chicago Weather: Cold Front Passes Soon
On Monday night, the CTA bus driver was recovering at the hospital, and everyone was hoping he would pull through. Meanwhile, Green is expected in Cook County Criminal Court for a bond hearing on Tuesday.