SANTA MONICA─A man who was hit and killed by a Metro Expo Train last weekend was ruled a suicide by the Los Angeles County Coroner on Friday, January 31.
Derrel Burnett Jr., 57, who was suspected to be transient, was hit by a Metro Light Rail Train around 6:00 a.m. at the intersection of Lincoln Boulevard and Colorado Avenue January 26. Officials later determined that Burnett walked in front of the westbound train taking his life.
The Santa Monica Fire Department responded to the scene to free Burnett from the wheels of the train. Paramedics administered life support as the Fire and Search and Rescue team set up equipment to lift the train to free Burnett. According to SMFD’s Captain Eric Himler, the process of freeing someone once they have been pinned to a train is a complex and dangerous operation.
Burnett still had a pulse and was breathing when he was extracted from the three-car train at 6:38 a.m. He was taken to UCLA in Westwood to be treated for his life threatening injuries. The SMFD managed to deliver him to a trauma center in less than an hour after dispatch, but Burnett succumbed to his injuries at the hospital. The coroner determined the cause of death was “traumatic injuries.”
There were approximately 10 passengers on the train at the time of the collision. The intersection was closed off for hours during the investigation. There were no reports of any other injuries.
Burnett’s death marks the ninth suicide in Santa Monica to transpire in the public over the past two years.
Canyon News reached out to the Los Angeles County Coroner for more information but did not hear back before print.