Man Accused of Stealing CTA Bus

Driver did not stop or pick up passengers: CTA

A Chicago man allegedly took a CTA bus on a joyride from one service garage to another Tuesday night.

"It clearly appears the individual was familiar with CTA bus operations and procedures," said CTA spokesman Brian Steele. "It was determined the driver did take the bus from one garage to another."

Cori S. Martin, 38, stands accused of taking the bus from a South Side garage on 77th Street, where it was being serviced, and driving it to a garage on the West Side at 358 S. Kedzie Ave, police said. Personnel at the facility questioned whether Martin was actually a CTA driver, then detained him and called police, said Brian Steele, CTA spokesman.

Steele said Martin was wearing clothing resembling a CTA uniform, carrying a CTA radio, and had a counterfeit CTA identification card when the bus was taken around 11 p.m.

Martin was charged Wednesday with two counts of unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle, possession of a fictitious/altered driver's license, and criminal trespass to state land, Chicago Police said.

He made no stops and did not have any interaction with customers, Steele said.

Martin has never been a CTA employee, though investigators have not verified reports of a relation to a CTA driver, Steele said.

The incident has prompted new procedures for signing in and checking out buses for employees.

"Additionally, we have increased our security presence at CTA bus garages," said Steele. "We have an outside security force that we use (and) basically we increased the personnel."

The CTA last month also approved a new payroll management and time card system with redundancies to better track bus assignment and movement, Steele said.

Martin is being held in the Cook County jail in lieu of  $450,000 and his next court appearance is set for July 10, the Cook County Sheriff's Office said.

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