Anthony Sadler, American Hero Who Helped Stop French Train Attack, Arrives Home

26 Aug 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

A Hero Of French Train Attack Will Receive U.S. Army Medal.

Aleksander Skarlatos, one of three Americans who subdued a heavily armed gunman on a Paris-bound train, will be awarded one of the U.S. PARIS – French authorities formally opened a terrorism investigation on Tuesday after a thwarted attack on a high-speed train last week, saying the suspected gunman had watched a jihadi video onboard minutes before the violence.

Video from Sacramento television station KCRA showed a relaxed Anthony Sadler, 23, walking off a commercial plane at Sacramento International Airport accompanied by his parents. The decision to open an investigation was based on the actions by 26-year-old Moroccan suspect Ayoub El-Khazzani on the train Friday night and information from other European authorities about his travels and apparent links to radical Islam, prosecutor Francois Molins said. Senior Army leaders say Skarlatos, a member of the Oregon National Guard, will get the Soldiers Medal — the Army’s highest award for acts of heroism not involving actual conflict with the enemy.

The Sacramento State University student was dressed in black shorts and a gray sweatshirt and was carrying a black backpack as the family walked into the tarmac with the rest of the passengers. Molins said El-Khazzani notably watched the online video on his phone minutes before he walked through the Amsterdam-to-Paris train carrying an assault rifle and other weapons. The three friends who tacked a suspected gunman and saved the life of a wounded victim were awarded France’s highest civilian award, the Legion of Honor by French president Francois Hollande.

After hearing the sound of gunfire, Skarlatos called on other passengers to act, then charged the gunman, helped wrestle his firearms away and helped knock him unconscious with his own rifle. “Spec. Sacramento State president Robert Nelsen said the campus is overwhelmed learning Sadler is set to return to school this year, a kinesiology senior but also a hometown hero. Skarlatos’ actions that day epitomize what we mean by a soldier of character — one who lives by a personal code where dedication to duty and taking care of others is sacred,” said Army Secretary John McHugh. The third man, 23-year-old Anthony Sadler, is scheduled to start his senior year at Sacramento State on Monday, although university officials are waiting to confirm when he will return home.

Now that the formal investigation is opened, investigating magistrates are expected to file numerous preliminary charges against El-Khazzani, including multiple attempted murders in connection with terrorism, possession of weapons in connection with terrorism, and participation in a terrorist conspiracy. El-Khazzani was found to have an AKM assault rifle with 270 rounds of ammunition, a 9mm handgun, a box-cutter and a bottle of gasoline, the prosecutor said.

The suspect had travelled through several European countries and had been repeatedly incarcerated in Spain and flagged for surveillance in France, Molins said. In questioning, El-Khazzani said he had no terrorism plans and had found a bag of weapons the night before in a Brussels park and planned to use them to rob passengers, according to Molins. Then they’re being flown straight to New York, where she assumes they will sit for interviews. “They really want to have a day that they can have to themselves in Germany, but whether or not they’re going to get that, I don’t know,” Karen Skarlatos said.

In Brussels, investigators searched two buildings where the gunman may have stayed in the Molenbeek-Saint-Jean neighborhood, the Federal Prosecutor’s Office said in a statement Tuesday. He says Stone is being treated for a laceration to his thumb, for which a full recovery is expected with ongoing therapy, as well as a “non-critical” eye injury and more minor wounds. Sadler “is an international hero, and so are his two friends,” said Nelsen, the president of Sacramento State. “They are longtime friends, they did something that took incredible courage, and I think all of us can learn something from them.”

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