A passenger on a Megabus is being hailed as a hero after he tackled a gunman who fired at least one shot on the bus, according to authorities.
Illinois State Police said they were called to the scene off Interstate 90 in Des Plaines around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday for a report of a shooting on a Megabus that was traveling from Chicago to Minneapolis. Police said a gunman fired a shot in the bathroom of the vehicle and was later taken down by passengers.
Witnesses said they heard a loud bang come from a bathroom on the vehicle.
“It was real loud,” said passenger Kenneth Smith. “We didn’t know what it was until we saw the gun.”
A man later exited the bathroom and started harassing the bus driver, passengers said. One witness said it appeared the man was trying to grab the wheel of the bus.
Smith stepped in and told the man to return to his seat, but witnesses said the man came back with a gun.
“He came back downstairs, he was grabbing at his hip, I had already seen that and I told him he was getting too close,” Smith said. “As he kept coming that’s when I rushed him, I choked him, he fell to the floor, the clip came out of the gun and that’s when I saw it so I pulled it out, gave it to my cousin and I held him down until the police arrived.”
Megabus said in a statement that the driver pulled over and “police quickly arrived and arrested the passenger.”
Passengers on the bus say without Smith, things could have been much worse.
“He saved us,” said passenger Ken Hasley. “The bus could’ve crashed or anything the way that guy was aggravating the bus driver so that guy right there is a hero.”
No injuries were reported in the incident, police said.
“Out of an abundance of caution the bus was changed and continued on their journey without additional incident,” Sean Hughes, director of corporate affairs for Megabus, said in a statement.
Authorities said the man did not threaten the driver, but was not cooperating with officers. State police said the suspect was taken into custody at the Des Plaines Police Department and charges are expected.