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Crime & Courts

NJ man arrested for trying to throw boys in front of train, police say

A New Jersey man has been charged with attempted murder and kidnapping after authorities said he tried to throw two young brothers in front of a train that was pulling into a station.

The boys, ages 7 and 9, were with their mother and grandmother at a New Jersey Transit station in Ramsey on Monday afternoon when the boys moved toward the platform's edge to see a train, police said.

Authorities say 47-year-old David Howard, of Wyckoff, approached the boys around 2:30 p.m. and put the 7-year-old in a headlock. They say he then grabbed the 9-year-old by the left shoulder and moved both toward the tracks.

The mother and grandmother intervened, and the boys broke free. The women then held Howard for police, and he allegedly spit at one officer while being arrested.

It wasn't clear why Howard approached the boys or why he appeared intent on harming them, according to authorities, who were trying to determine whether he had been using alcohol or drugs. The boys' mother told police that Howard had been sitting on a bench and spitting on the ground, and that he appeared to be intoxicated.

Howard, who also faces charges of aggravated assault and aggravated assault on a police officer, is being held on $500,000 bail. Authorities do not know whether he has an attorney.

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