Power and Politics - I am Not the Yellow Peril

The life and times of an Asian American activist who tells all the truth (and dishes news and analysis) but with a leftwards slant.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Asian American heroes save the day in NYC

This crazy dude decided to grab some knives out of a restaurant kitchen and start stabbing people, and a Chinese American NYC police officer who was off duty saved the day:

The cook ran out of the restaurant, his blood leaving a trail to the corner of 34th Street. Mr. Coleman walked to the corner of Second Avenue and 35th Street, where he knocked Ms. Barron to the ground — “without words and without threats,” one investigator said — as she walked her Scottish terrier, Velvet. In the crosswalk, he crouched over Ms. Barron, fumbling with his knives and stabbing her again and again, the police said.

Around the same time, Gregory Chin, a transit police officer, was paying his bill at the Gemini restaurant, the police said. When he walked outside and saw Ms. Barron being attacked, he approached the attacker, who picked up his knives and began to walk away, the police said. When Mr. Coleman turned around — the knives still in his hands, according to the police and witnesses — Officer Chin fired a shot that struck Mr. Coleman in the abdomen.

Thank goodness the off duty cop was around to help, because although the assailant didn't hit her in any vital organs, if he hadn't been stopped, he might have gotten there.

Apparently, Mr. Coleman's first victim, Amarjit Singh, the cook at the restaurant, also rushed to help the elderly woman, despite dripping blood all the way.

His sliced ear was hanging off his face and his blood was pooling at his feet as 56-year-old Amarjit Singh stood on the corner looking desperately for help.

Then Singh gazed back up Second Ave. toward the Texas Smokehouse restaurant, where he had been preparing for another long day as a chef when the bare-chested madman came in and grabbed at least four knives from the kitchen.

The madman who had slashed Singh and sent him fleeing down to E. 34th St. was now up at the next corner, repeatedly stabbing a 67-year-old woman outside the Gemini Diner.

Singh instantly made a decision that proved him one of our city's very best and bravest. This chef from Queens by way of India became New York royalty as he forgot his own wounds and dashed straight back into the mortal danger he had just been so lucky to escape.

The madman looked up from the bloodied woman and rose on seeing the courageous Singh approach. A 25-year-old onlooker named Antionette Brown watched amazed as the madman slowly backed up. He was clutching at least four knives but seemed unnerved by Singh's uncommon courage and selflessness, as if Evil were being vanquished purely by the power of Good.

"He probably saved her life," Brown later said.

It's an unfortunate event that has transpired, but luckily the victims are going to survive, and also I'm glad that these NYC heroes were around to prevent Mr. Coleman from hurting anyone else. (Sorry for the Daily News' breathless take on the story but they have two good photos of our heroes.) This is one example of the tragedies of mental illness, and Mr. Coleman needs to get some good psychiatric help, as well as take his medication. I am just glad that none of my NYC friends were around that area that day and that they weren't hurt.

Such random and senseless violence that could have been worse, and could have been prevented. I'm just glad these guys' quick thinking prevented anything worse from happening.

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