National News

Gresham father says 2-year-old daughter was poked by needle on MAX train

Posted January 11, 2018 12:11 p.m. EST

— A Gresham father says his 2-year-old daughter was poked by a hypodermic needle while riding a MAX train.

Brian Higby told FOX 12 that on Tuesday his family was taking the MAX Green Line from Clackamas Town Center to Gateway Transit Center when he heard his daughter say "owie."

Higby says he looked down at his daughter, who was in his wife's arms, and saw she was holding a syringe in her hand. He says he believed the needle poked her and immediately got the needle out of her reach.

At the next stop, they got out to seek medical help at Providence Immediate Care, who then transferred them to Randall Children's Hospital. At Randall Children's Hospital, tests were done on the syringe and on the 2-year-old girl.

Luckily, the little girl is fine but they still waiting on some long-term tests results and hope those come back clear too.

Looking back, Higby says it was a moment of total fear.

"Total hopelessness, you know, helpless. In awe like, 'Oh my God, what just happened to my child,'" said Higby. "It would be like being in a drive-by shooting basically. There was no control of it."

Right now, Transit Police are investigating and reviewing video of the incident. But finding needles everywhere is becoming a scary trend.

Clean & Safe found more than 16,000 needles in downtown Portland in 2016.

TriMet officials say they see this problem on their trains and buses too, and it's not uncommon to find hypodermic needles when they clean their vehicles every night.

They encourage everyone to check before taking a seat, and urge that if anyone see's something, tell a TriMet employee right away.