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Woman Says CTA Security Guard Should Have Helped Her Sister Who Died On The Tracks While Retrieving A Cell Phone

CHICAGO (CBS) -- A woman says a security guard should have done more to help her sister before she was hit and killed while trying to retrieve a dropped call phone last week at the 69th Street Red Line station.

Leaked surveillance video shows a private security guard — hired by the CTA — stood on the platform as it happened last Thursday at the 69th Street stop.

Brandy Martin admits it was not a good decision for her sister, Felon Smith, to go after her phone after dropping it on the tracks, but she says more should have been done to help her sister.

"I would have liked to have seen that security guard reach for my sister," Martin said. "He just walked by so nonchalant."

CBS 2 has decided to show only still frames of the video.

It shows Smith climb onto the tracks, and about 20 seconds later a train hits her — all while the private security guard stood on the platform.

Martin said she'd like to ask the CTA what their policies are, but they have not reached out to her.

"Are the taxpayers just paying money to just put people up on the train tracks?" she said.

A CTA spokesperson said, when someone winds up on the tracks, the guards should first alert that person and then notify CTA. The spokesperson said the guard on Thursday told Smith she can't be on the tracks but he did not call the incident in to the CTA until immediately after the crash.

According to the CTA, in the best case scenario, it can take about 15-20 seconds to cut the power on the tracks after a controller is notified of danger on the tracks.

The guard is employed by AGB Investigative Services.

After a CBS 2 reporter showed up at their South Side office, workers for the private security company told CBS 2 that any questions would have to be directed to the CTA.

CTA said it was still investigating and could not answer our questions Tuesday afternoon.

Two CTA train workers who were not involved in the incident and asked to stay anonymous said they felt the guard should have hand signaled to try to catch the train operator's attention.

Martin also said she is upset that the video, which was not authorized for release by the CTA, was leaked on social media. CTA officials said they are investigating how the video got out.

According to the CTA, it is not clear whether Smith heard the guard call out to her or if anyone at the station realized how rapidly the incoming train was approaching. The 69th St. station is in the middle of I-94, creating a noisy environment.

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