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CTA worker charged, denied bail in shooting of man inside 95th Red Line station

CTA worker denied bail in shooting of rider 02:28

CHICAGO (CBS) –  The CTA worker who shot a man inside the 95th Red Line station faces two felony charges.

Sylvester Adams, 53, is charged with one felony count of first-degree attempted murder and one felony count of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.

Adams was identified as the person who shot another man following a verbal and physical altercation inside the 95th Red Line station early Saturday morning.

Video from a bystander shows the victim shoving Adams to the ground before walking away down the stairs, that's when he retrieved a handgun, walked towards the staircase, and fired nine times – striking the victim three times in the lower abdomen, back, and lower left leg.

In bond court Sunday, prosecutors said the victim and another man approached the CTA attendant kiosk around 2:13 a.m. Saturday to ask Adams and his coworker for direction and the location of an ATM. The victim and the other man got into a fight, and Adams' coworker called the police. Officers put the other man onto the Red Line, but the shooting victim said he was waiting for a raide and did not want to take the train. 

After the officers left, Adams and his coworker were locked inside their enclosed kiosk as the victim -- who was intoxicated but unarmed -- began threatening them from outside, prosecutors said. 

More CTA riders showed up, and the shooting victim became combative with customers, according to prosecutors. That's when Adams stepped out of the locked kiosk with a hammer in his hand and approached the victim. The two got into an argument, and the shooting victim pushed Adams to the ground. 

According to prosecutors, Adams tried to hit the man with the hammer while on the ground, and the victim kicked Adams in the face before turning and walking down the stairs. 

Prosecutors say Adams then fired nine shots at the victim, who was struck in the back, abdomen, and lower right leg. 

Adams returned to the kiosk after the shooting and told his coworker, "My life is over." Prosecutors said he also admitted to shooting the victim while speaking to officers whose body cameras were activated. 

The victim was taken to the University of Chicago Hospital in critical condition. 

A public defender said Adams has been a CTA employee for four years.   

In a statement, CTA confirmed that Adams worked as a customer assistant, and they are pursuing termination. It was also confirmed that he violated several other rules including the prohibition of possessing a firearm.

When asked about background checks, the CTA said it "has a comprehensive, multi-sourced background check process that is conducted for all potential new hires, including Mr. Adams."

CBS 2's background check confirmed that Mr. Adams was arrested in 1999 but was never convicted. Illinois law prohibits employers from asking about or using an arrest record as a basis to disqualify a candidate from employment."

We confirmed Adams was arrested in January of 1999 for domestic battery but wasn't convicted. His next court appearance is April 4.

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