BART Rider Fakes Seizure After Receiving Threatening Note

The incident took place Saturday afternoon on a Dublin-bound train.

BART police officer on a platform for an unrelated incident (Jessica Christain/S.F. Examiner)

UPDATE: BART Police Department announced that it watched surveillance footage of the train that backs up Dragland’s report, showing both her and the suspect alone and faced back-to-back in their seats. 

The suspect is seen reaching over Dragland’s shoulder, presumed to be when they dropped the note, the BART press release said. After faking the seizure, two passengers checked on Dragland when the suspect exited at Powell Street Station.

The suspect is confirmed to be a white female, now known to have long, strawberry blond hair and possibly be in her 30s. She was seen dragging a laundry cart and BART police did not find any indication of her being armed with weapons.

BART PD is taking information on the suspect and can be reached at 510-464-7040.

Photo courtesy of BART Police Department

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A woman riding BART on Saturday faked a medical emergency to evade a threatening note mysteriously handed to her, BART police said.

The woman, identified by local media as Julie Dragland, told BART police at 4:51 p.m. Saturday that she received a note saying there were guns pointed at her and that she would live if she handed over her wallet and phone to the person behind her without turning around. 

Dragland told the San Francisco Chronicle that she mouthed “help me” to a man standing nearby and improvised by faking a seizure after he got off the Dublin-bound train while it was still in San Francisco.

“I probably looked very ridiculous,” Dragland said to the Chronicle. “I slumped sideways and started shaking and crying. I closed my eyes and increased the vigor so people would pay attention.”

Dragland did not see who handed her the note, but thought a white woman with a suitcase was sitting behind her. Officers searched Civic Center Station for someone matching that description to no avail, police said.

Photo by Julia Dragland/Twitter

On her now-protected Twitter account, Dragland posted the note that read: “There are 2 guns pointed at you now. If you want to live hand back your wallet + phone NOW + do not turn around and be descreet [sic]. Do not turn around until after you have left Civic Center + you will live.”

Dragland told BART she would not press charges against the suspect if found. No other passengers called BART to offer their account.

BART is still in the process of gathering security footage from the train and platform, spokesperson Alicia Trost said Monday.

 

 

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