"The southbound train observed him, the arms were down on the crossing, and the engineer blew his horn, and for some reason he [the victim] just stepped in front of the train," Gibson said. "It's possible he didn't hear the train coming. He did have [music] ear buds in his ears."
The incident was still under investigation Saturday.
"We haven't had a lot of dealings with him," Gibson said about the victim. "There's no indication he was having any problems. It's just kind of a bizarre case. We're trying to find out what his motivation was."
In a statement issued Saturday, a Union Pacific Railroad spokesman said the incident was under investigation by railroad officials, and that it takes a train more than a mile to come to a complete stop. Meanwhile, "our train crew is working with peer counselors who help our train crew members work through the shock and grief of dealing with an incident like this one," stated spokesman Aaron Hunt.