Photos by Lola Chavez.

A man named Michael jumped onto the 24th Street BART tracks just as a Daly City-bound train was approaching. Wearing a shirt that said Viva la Revolucion and yelling “You have the power,” he said he was occupying the tracks because he was sick of sleeping on the streets for six years.

Witnesses on the platform waved their arms frantically at the driver, and the train came to a screeching halt within a foot of hitting the man.

Michael was on the tracks for no more than two minutes when police arrived on the scene.

“Michael, get back up,” they said over and over for several minutes. He yelled expletives at the officers, saying he would not move until television cameras showed up.

The eight or so police officers then jumped onto the tracks and chased Michael nearly three yards before they tackled him, handcuffed him and brought him back up to the platform. It was all over in less than 10 minutes.

Other trains that had to stop just outside the station waited more than 20 minutes before moving again. Drivers said they had no communication with the BART system.

BART had shut off power to the side of the tracks where Michael was standing, track one. He had touched the third rail.

“I could have killed myself,” he told police. “I know,” one replied.

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18 Comments

  1. Do not make the mistake of associating that guy with occupy or any other movement (take notice of the quotation marks)… even if he does have those associations he is a complete kook. Before this happen’s he was rambling incomprehensible things with one of the only that made any sense being “Your generation know’s nothing.”

  2. This same man was spitting at people on 24th St @ Florida and cursing loudly around 12:30 pm. He appeared to be intoxicated and looking for trouble.

  3. Shut the hell up.
    This guy is an Occupier through and through.
    It’s not everyone else’s fault you allow idiots into your number.

  4. The guy won’t be sleeping on the street for the next 72 hours – he’ll be at SF General in a psych ward.

  5. People like this guy should be in a mental ward for life. Why do we let these crazies run around and terrorize everyone else? At the least, someone should kick his ass and run him out of town.

    1. Empathy. It’s called empathy. I highly recommend it. It is, after all, what defines us as humans, and not mere animals. If you had a shred of it, you might be able to imagine yourself in this man’s position. Six years of homelessness in a city surrounded by uncaring people who see you as vermin, and then add a ferocious thunderstorm on top of all that. Now,if you were in possession of even the slightest bit of empathy, you would be able to understand why this man did what he did. But as you apparently aren’t, I’ll break it down for you. There are times when things can no longer continue the way they have been, and one has to make a final stand. If death is the only way out, so be it, and to hell with your commute.

    2. Mental ward for life? How expensive! How luxurious! How entitled! What about the national deficit? Besides flunking his SATs, the guy looks like a dwarf. Does civilization really have to put up with an occupation of dwarves (http://www.pomaranczowa-alternatywa.org/index-eng.html)? Why not just let the BART train run him over? This kind of terrorizing inconvenience has just got to stop.

    3. Right, so, the thing is, Ronald Reagan closed a bunch of mental health facilities across California, including in SF, and many of the relatively unsettling folks that you see with little choice but to wander downtown in one of the most prosperous areas of the world were ejected from that system.

      Additionally, you have to be careful drawing lines as to what circumstances people should be locked away forever under. Mental facilities have traditionally been places to put people who question authority.

      Yes, crazy people are likely to question authority amongst other things, but that doesn’t mean everyone who questions authority is crazy. You, for instance, just questioned authority. 😉

      1. The ACLU bravely fought for the rights of people wantonly incarcerated by a cruel government and eventually won their freedom.

        Reagan evilly shuttered the mental hospitals and kicked the ill to the curb to fend for themselves.

        It’s called the “Lanterman–Petris–Short Act.”

    1. Seriously these stalker legs/butt ‘fashion pictures’ on every article are really creeping me out.

  6. This guy is mentally unstable….he often walks around the mission with his guitar rambling incoherently…this is not news.

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