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Boxcar Survivors Charged

December 5, 1998

HAMILTON, Ohio (AP) _ Two boys who survived eight days in a locked boxcar are now locked up in a juvenile detention center awaiting a hearing on criminal trespass charges.

John Wayne Riley, 15, and Billy Ray Grimes Jr., 12, both of Hamilton, appeared in court Friday and entered a plea of ``true″ _ equivalent to a plea of guilty in adult court _ to charges they had violated probation, court spokeswoman Tina Pagano said.

The boys said they boarded the freight train Nov. 23, switched to another boxcar a couple of miles away and then got locked in. They told police they survived by drinking the cargo _ stale beer in mostly empty bottles being returned to a brewery in Trenton, where they were freed when workers heard their cries for help.

Police said they told differing stories of why they got in the train: The older boy claimed they were fleeing bullies, but the younger one said they just wanted to hop a freight.

Because they are juveniles, the court has not disclosed the offenses for which the boys are on probation. They were held for a hearing Friday on the trespassing charges.

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