Crime Kansas City man hailed as a hero after helping stop knife attack in UK
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MANCHESTER, England (KCTV) – A Kansas City man is being called a hero in England after helping thwart a knife attack on a city train.
The incident in Manchester Friday night made headlines across the United Kingdom, and Kansas City resident Dan Speir was at the center of it all.
“I really didn’t even have any time to think about it. I just knew this guy had a knife and had to be restrained somehow,” Speir told KCTV5 News.
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Speir said he noticed the man acting suspiciously on the train.
“He was screaming, yelling things that no one could really understand,” he recalled. “Sometimes switching to some foreign language that I couldn’t understand.”
Then Speir saw that man had begun to yell at someone before pulling a knife from his pocket.
Without a second thought, Speir put the suspect in a headlock, then others helped him fight the knife from the man’s hand until the train stopped and they could hold him down on the platform.
“He was fighting for all he’s worth, but at this point I had five or six other passengers helping me, and we were able to restrain him until police got there,” he recalled.
Earlier this year, Sky News said knife crime was on the rise in the UK. In 2011 there were just over 30,000 crimes that involved knives or sharp instruments. By 2018, there were nearly 43,000 such crimes, a 30% increase in less than a decade.
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Police say the victim – who had been stabbed as many as three times with a 3- to 4-inch pocket knife -- was taken to Holy Cross Medical Center for surgery. The suspect is in police custody, after passengers on the bus detained him for officers. No further information was released about the victim or the suspect. There were five to eight people on the bus, including the victim. Witnesses told police they did not know why victim was attacked. The knife was recovered, along with surveillance video from the bus, police said.
Speir said he was aware of the spike in crime before the incident last week.
“I read about it in the papers here every day and read about knife crime in parts of the country every day, so I was very aware it was a problem,” he explained.
A 38-year veteran of the Army Reserve in both enlisted and commissioned roles, Speir spent 30 years as a Reserve Police Officer with Kansas City Police Department, where he said he was “probably their worst defensive tactics officer they ever had.”
Despite his modesty, his experience and training no doubt helped prevent what could have been a tragic incident.
“It was just being in the right place, or the wrong place, at the right or the wrong time, depending on how you look at it.”
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KC man hailed as a hero after help stop knife attack in UK
A Kansas City man is being called a hero in England after helping thwart a knife attack on a city train.
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