DART Police Chief James Spiller wouldn't say whether people should have been told about the violent rape of a woman caught on tape at the Walnut Hill Station.
“You know, we don’t talk about what we should do,” Spiller said in an interview with FOX4 on Thursday. The transit agency is under fire for keeping quiet about the incident.
Samuel Jamall White has been charged with that rape and Dallas police said he committed a December burglary and a second rape-at-gun-point on Feb. 8.
“We knew something occurred,” Spiller said of the Walnut Hill Station incident. “The victim did not cooperate with us. Even after there was no cooperation, we continued on with our investigation.”
Spiller said his officers were trying to identify the victim and suspect putting their images out to DART officers, train and bus operators and the cities in DART system -- but nothing was made public.
It was only after another horrible crime, the murder of teenager Zoe Hastings, that DART officers actually went to Dallas police.
The timeline of the case and DART actions (as compiled by FOX4):
SEPT. 27 - alleged rape at Walnut Hill DART station
OCT. 12 - Zoe Hastings is murdered
OCT. 24 - Antonio Lamar Cochran is arrested
OCT. 26 - DART takes video of rape and picture of victim to Dallas homicide
FEB. 8 - Dallas has rape of woman at 7300 Skillman
FEB. 11 - convenience store video of White is released
FEB. 15 - the first time the public sees DART light rail station video of White
Spiller wouldn’t budge on not alerting the public, but other law enforcement professionals disagree.
“What I saw disturbed me,” said Captain Mark Howard, retired Dallas Sheriff’s officer. “It appeared that they had evidence early on that wasn’t released for whatever reason that could have gotten that individual identified and hopefully would have prevented any subsequent attacks.”