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Calif. man hit by train after being drugged

May 27, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
A man is in custody in Italy accused of causing a California tourist's death after a strange attack.The California man and his wife were on vacation when incident happened early Friday at the suburban Tiburtina train station near Rome.

Italian authorities say 74-year-old Frank Pehl was struck and killed by a train as he walked on the tracks. They believe he was wandering around in a daze after drinking a cappuccino laced with drugs.

A 54-year-old Italian, identified as Antonio Schisani, has been arrested. He's accused of drugging and robbing Pehl and his wife before the deadly accident.

Authorities say the suspect had befriended the two tourists at a local cafe. He then brought them the coffee drinks mixed with sleeping pills and other drugs.

The robbery was captured on security camera video from a nearby restaurant. It shows the victim stumbling near the train tracks.

Pehl's wife survived but she was briefly hospitalized after the incident.

They had just completed a Mediterranean cruise and were on their way to Hungary. After being released from the hospital, authorities say the wife continued on to Hungary, where her husband was born.

 

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