ST. LOUIS (KMOV) — There is $25,000 reward for information in the shooting death of a MetroLink security guard killed Sunday morning at the Delmar station.
The victim has been identified by family as James Cook, a husband and father of two.
“He was the greatest guy,” said Pastor John Blackmore, a family friend and pastor of Sullivan Christian Church where the Cooks attended. Blackmore says Cook served as a Marine before moving to Sullivan. He got work as a security guard to support his family. Friends started a GoFundMe page to help the Cook family.
Officials with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department said the shooting happened around 10 a.m. on Sunday. They say Cook approached the man about a disturbance before the suspect pulled out a gun and shot the guard, police said. Cook was unarmed.
According to investigators, witnesses say the suspect may have had contact with Cook earlier in the morning after a possible violation related to sleeping on the train.
[READ: $25K reward offered for info on deadly shooing of security guard at MetroLink]
“Tragic. This is a tragic situation where an officer was doing his job or attempting to do his job and he was brutally shot,” said Lt. Col. Rochelle Jones.
“His loss is devastating. All of our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and those close to him,” Metro said in a statement. Cook was a contracted security guard working for G4S. “The MetroLink Police Task Force has pledged to enhance enforcement patrols on the Metro Transit system, starting immediately. Our region is challenged by these random acts of violence, and our transit community is not immune to their impact.”
News 4 has reported on security concerns on Metro for years. In 2020, Metro increased their partnership with police for more officers and hiring G4S to take over as security. According to Metro, G4S guards are not armed but carry pepper spray and batons.
There are numerous cameras around the Delmar MetroLink platform. SLMPD released a photo of the suspect late Sunday night.
“We need community help to help us with this, if anybody saw anything that, if you saw anything please contact us,” said Lt. Col. Jones.
CrimeStoppers is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest. Call them at 866-371-8477 if you know anything.
Bi-State later released the following statement about the shooting:
“This is a deeply sad and tragic day for Bi-State Development and Metro Transit. One of our team members, a contracted G4S security officer, was killed this morning due to an evil and senseless act of violence at the Delmar Loop Transit Center. His loss is devastating. All of our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and those close to him.
The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department is actively investigating this crime, and our Public Safety team and MetroLink Police Task Force are providing any and all information and assistance available to aid in this investigation. The MetroLink Police Task Force has pledged to enhance law enforcement patrols on the Metro Transit system, starting immediately.
Our region is challenged by these random acts of violence, and our transit community is not immune to their impact. We are committed to working with our regional leaders and law enforcement partners to confront this crisis.
Although we are shaken by this unexplainable tragedy, our team will continue to do their important work and serve the transportation needs of our communities. These brave men and women deserve all of our support. “
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