I’m much more wary when travelling on public transport this past month or so since reading about that guy in Canada who was beheaded by another passenger on a bus. Yes, beheaded. I found myself dozing off on the bus down to Wexford recently before it flashed through my mind and now I’m keeping my wits firmly about me while using public transport.
Beheaded Canada bus man ‘named’
A young man beheaded in a savage knife attack on a Canadian cross-country bus has been identified by friends as a “bubbly” 22-year-old man.
Canadian police have not yet formally confirmed the victim’s identity, but friends paid tribute on Facebook and in e-mails to Canadian media.
One told broadcaster CBC that Tim McLean, the presumed victim, was loved by many and called him a “ladies man”.
Police have charged Vince Weiguang Li, 40, with second-degree murder.
Mr Li, of Edmonton, Alberta, appeared in court in Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, on Friday.
He said nothing when the judge asked whether he was going to use a lawyer, merely nodding when asked whether he was exercising the right not to speak.
The judge said Mr Li should appear in court on Tuesday after he had had an opportunity to speak to a lawyer.
Newly-established Facebook groups and Tim McLean’s Myspace page have filled with messages of support for the victims’ family after news of the horrific killing.
Eyewitnesses on board the bus, which was travelling through a desolate stretch of Canada’s vast prairies, said the victim was stabbed 50 or 60 times by the man sitting next to him.
The attacker then severed his head with a large knife, reportedly brandishing the head to terrified passengers.
In an e-mail to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, a friend of Tim McLean, Jossie Kehler, told of her sadness.
“He has a lot of friends and they are all very upset he’s gone, and they would like to say they miss him and he will always be in their hearts,” she wrote.
On Facebook, news of the killing led to hundreds of friends and well-wishers joining a tribute group.
The site description read: “RIP Tim McLean, you are loved and you will be missed dearly! That man will pay for what he did! We love you!”
The attacker was arrested after a lengthy standoff with police late on Wednesday night.
One passenger, Garnet Caton, said many of the 37 passengers saw the attacker “cutting the guy’s head off and pretty much gutting him up”.
The attacker ran at them, Mr Caton said, and they ran out of the bus, holding the door shut to prevent him getting out.
The attack appeared to be unprovoked and it is thought the killer did not know his victim.
The passengers, many of whom were badly shaken by what they witnessed, were taken to a hotel in Brandon, Manitoba, and were given crisis counselling.