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Wendy’s Employee Sabotages Railroad Crossing Just to Have a Slow Shift

He caught three charges for the stunt, and the FBI is reportedly involved.
Reading & Northern Railroad Police

A Wendy’s employee in Pennsylvania has been arrested for sabotaging railroad equipment. According to police, he did it with hopes of causing a malfunction that would have activated the crossing guards, resulting in a traffic disruption and therefore a slow shift.

A local 34-year-old was accused of interfering with sensors along the Reading & Northern, according to WFMZ. Railroad police say that at 6:58 p.m. on August 26, a surveillance camera captured an individual “tampering with railroad equipment” by installing what was reported to be a “shunt,” which sends a signal to the crossing gate. This would have activated the gate, blocking traffic, while the device’s presence would not have been detectable to the railroad’s dispatchers according to Tilden Township police.

According to Trains, the suspect was identified by his coworkers, who recognized his restaurant uniform. Since his arrest, he has reportedly identified an accomplice, who dropped him off at the railroad crossing, according to WFMZ.

“During the interview, they told us that their intentions were that if the gates could malfunction and they could somehow block traffic, then that would prevent people from getting to Wendy’s, and they could have a slow night at work,” said Officer Frank Cataldi of the Tilden Township police. Officer Cataldi claimed “a crash could have absolutely [sic] occurred.” According to the National University Rail Center, however, shunts are designed to send false positives to crossing gates rather than false negatives, which would have activated the crossing gates instead of disabling them.

The man has reportedly been charged with causing or risking a catastrophe, criminal mischief, and reckless endangerment. The incident remains under investigation by the township and railroad police, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation. They seek a search warrant for his phone for evidence of an ulterior motive.

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