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4 killed in Taipei MRT stabbing spree

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Four people were killed and 21 injured when a 21-year-old college student went on a killing spree on a Taipei Metro train traveling from Longshan Temple Station to Jiangzicui Station, the New Taipei City Police Department said yesterday.

Chen Kuo-en (陳國恩), head of the New Taipei City Police Department, said that the assailant, Cheng Chieh (鄭捷), is now in custody after being arrested by the metro police with the help of other passengers.

Chen said that Cheng took the metro train from Jiangzicui station to Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall Station after purchasing two knives at a supermarket yesterday afternoon, later taking another train going in the opposite direction from Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall Station.

“He started to stab random passengers with his 30-centimeter long knife in the train after it left from Longshan Temple Station to Jiangzicui Station, a trip that usually takes over two minutes, which is the longest ride in the entire Taipei Metro system,” said Chen.

According to witnesses of the incident, Cheng stabbed everyone in his sight without saying anything, and passengers started to run toward the back of the train.

A witness said that she started to hear people screaming after the train left Longshan Temple Station, and she stood against the wall of the compartment with a few girls. She said that some middle-aged men stood in front of them to protect them.

Based on a video filmed by a witness, all passengers rushed out of the train after it arrived at Jiangzicui Station, and Cheng walked out of the train with the knife in his hand. The metro police and some passengers tackled him in the MRT station and helped police officers take him into custody.

According to Chen, three passengers who were severely injured had no vital signs after being sent to nearby hospitals, where they were later pronounced dead. Another victim was also pronounced dead five hours later at a hospital.

May 22, 2014    curtisakbar@
RIP victims

Just because he didn't have a medical history of mental illness doesn't mean he didn't have any. Mental illness is largely ignored in this part of the world.

But mental illness or not, he should face the death penalty and quickly, as due process isn't needed as it's clear that he killed in cold blood and it was pre-meditated. Going to buy the knives, selecting the long tunnel section of the MRT, randomly attacking without warning.
May 22, 2014    kharenviernes@
Grudge? Maybe someone hurt him from the past, I mean bad experienced from mrt passengers, maybe? May God enlighten his mind.
May 22, 2014    r7r7.breeze@
Dear Sirs,

I'm a foreigner who live and teaches in Taipei.
I just want to say how shocked and deeply saddened I am by yesterday's incident on Taipei Metro.
My deepest condolences go to the victims' families, and I hope wounded ones recover soon, at least bodily. Mental scars will last longer.

What saddens me even more is that a young guy does something so insane in front of so many people and nobody dares to stop him. Why is this indifference?
I understand the grave shock and terror at that very moment, however, the killing spree lasts for four-five minutes, it's a long time. It can be dangerous to stop a psychopath holding two knives, but at least passengers could throw things at him and try to disrupt him so that victims could have some more time to flee.

Another vital mistake is that most passenger get lost in their smart phones and tablet-like things as soon as they are aboard paying no attention at all to what happens around them.

The problem is deeper than this incident. This incident is the result of deeper problems in the society. Maybe parents should spend more time with their kids instead of chasing more money to pay the bills. They should try to understand and help their kids. We teachers try our best to teach them not only the school subjects but also how to be a healthy sane person, however that's not enough. Parents have to do good parenting.

The authorities must assign some undercover security officers to ride on trains in case of emergency.

Especially female passengers should carry some deterrent sprays in their bags.

I hope you'll put the things I've just mentioned on your agenda and bring them up to the attention of authorities.

Thank you.

Melita
May 22, 2014    cramos1222@
And they say something is wrong in America...its all over the world
May 22, 2014    blairjames@
curtisakbar@ wrote:
RIP victims

Just because he didn't have a medical history of mental illness doesn't mean he didn't have any. Mental illness is largely ignored in this part of the world.

But mental illness or not, he should face the death penalty and quickly, as due process isn't needed as it's clear that he killed in cold blood and it was pre-meditated. Going to buy the knives, selecting the long tunnel section of the MRT, randomly attacking without warning.
Here's the point, when does a sane person murder? I think insanity could be given as a reason for any such brutal attacks.

As such, I agree with you: guilty, execute. Wish we had same process in Canada, where instead we let our free after a few counseling sessions.
May 22, 2014    galaxietw@
r7r7.breeze@ wrote:
Dear Sirs,

I'm a foreigner who live and teaches in Taipei.
I just want to say how shocked and deeply saddened I am by yesterday's incident on Taipei Metro.
My deepest condolences go to the victims' families, and I hope wounded ones recover soon, at least bodily. Mental scars will last longer.

What saddens me even more is that a young guy does something so insane in front of so many people and nobody dares to stop him. Why is this indifference?
I understand the grave shock and terror at that very moment, however, the killing spree lasts for four-five minutes, it's a long time. It can be dangerous to stop a psychopath holding two knives, but at least passengers could throw things at him and try to disrupt him so that victims could have some more time to flee.

Another vital mistake is that most passenger get lost in their smart phones and tablet-like things as soon as they are aboard paying no attention at all to what happens around them.

The problem is deeper than this incident. This incident is the result of deeper problems in the society. Maybe parents should spend more time with their kids instead of chasing more money to pay the bills. They should try to understand and help their kids. We teachers try our best to teach them not only the school subjects but also how to be a healthy sane person, however that's not enough. Parents have to do good parenting.

The authorities must assign some undercover security officers to ride on trains in case of emergency.

Especially female passengers should carry some deterrent sprays in their bags.

I hope you'll put the things I've just mentioned on your agenda and bring them up to the attention of authorities.

Thank you.

Melita
Well they did throw things at him and deterred him with umbrellas. What happened was very quick. And the most important is, such kind of atrocity NEVER happened before. That's why it is so shocking.
May 22, 2014    rightness123@
kharenviernes@ wrote:
Grudge? Maybe someone hurt him from the past, I mean bad experienced from mrt passengers, maybe? May God enlighten his mind.
How can the Almighty allow this dastardly act to happen in the first place?
May 22, 2014    rightness123@
cramos1222@ wrote:
And they say something is wrong in America...its all over the world
Unfortunately, Asians are learning the wrong things from America. But thankfully guns are hard to come by - can you imagine the fatalities and injuries if this guy had a hand gun?
May 22, 2014    undoy@
Authorities should study deeper what's the problem of this guy.
May 22, 2014    chao_en@
I think what affected him the most was the games on the cyber space which are filled with violence. The circuits within the boy's head are already programmed for him to be a cold blood killer.
May 23, 2014    enzo56@
Taipei is one of the safest places in Asia. Please don't compare with America.
May 23, 2014    edkwong317@
r7r7.breeze@ wrote:
Dear Sirs,

I'm a foreigner who live and teaches in Taipei.
I just want to say how shocked and deeply saddened I am by yesterday's incident on Taipei Metro.
My deepest condolences go to the victims' families, and I hope wounded ones recover soon, at least bodily. Mental scars will last longer.

What saddens me even more is that a young guy does something so insane in front of so many people and nobody dares to stop him. Why is this indifference?
I understand the grave shock and terror at that very moment, however, the killing spree lasts for four-five minutes, it's a long time. It can be dangerous to stop a psychopath holding two knives, but at least passengers could throw things at him and try to disrupt him so that victims could have some more time to flee.

Another vital mistake is that most passenger get lost in their smart phones and tablet-like things as soon as they are aboard paying no attention at all to what happens around them.

The problem is deeper than this incident. This incident is the result of deeper problems in the society. Maybe parents should spend more time with their kids instead of chasing more money to pay the bills. They should try to understand and help their kids. We teachers try our best to teach them not only the school subjects but also how to be a healthy sane person, however that's not enough. Parents have to do good parenting.

The authorities must assign some undercover security officers to ride on trains in case of emergency.

Especially female passengers should carry some deterrent sprays in their bags.

I hope you'll put the things I've just mentioned on your agenda and bring them up to the attention of authorities.

Thank you.

Melita
The problem is not indifference. This would happen in a lot of the world. It all comes down to flight or fight. Most people's reaction to a guy with a knife coming at them isn't to disarm him. Most of us would fear ourselves getting hurt in the process or getting killed even. It is a sad thing that we don't take these risks to prevent further blood shed but it's the sad truth.
May 23, 2014    myatold@
The imagery of knife-wielding "losers" –mostly young, male, underemployed, mentally ill- haunts East Asian citizens during their rush-hours, partly because there are potentially so many of them.
May 23, 2014    skier_rich@
In the following days, the Taiwan media will report on his family, friends, what kind of ice cream he likes, how many cats his neighbors have, how many Facebook likes he gets, etc. Then after the media circus, the political circus will begin, with the DPP blaming President Ma for everything.
May 23, 2014    ghakim@
See beauty in Taiwan with such a Great people and real humanities and freedom. They are just great.
Attitude of love needed for youths and pressure of getting degrees must be removed.
Can you guys get the following type of thinking originated from nature?
Bud jumped from sleep ... Fresh Sage Flower born and... Thorn laughed and said to flower: Hi, ... but proud flower no answer. Suffered thorns but no complain ... Over time more ... What a beautiful flower become... Cruelty hand comes close to pick-up flower ... Panic rushes flowers ... but Thorn went into the hand to protect it.. And flowers remain alive ... Tomorrow morning as. .. Thorn wake-up with a drop of rain ... Hearty beautiful flower told her: Hi ...
May 23, 2014    marialsy@
According to the boy, his parents forced him to study hours and hours when he was a kid and was back then that he started to plan something like that, something big because he was and has been very dissatisfied with his life, somehow depressed and wanted to end his life but he didn't have the guts to kill himself. He went to stab others, kill others so that the justice will give him a death penalty. He wants others to execute him.
May 23, 2014    cia-yes@
Those human right advocates and anti-death penalty group will save him from gallows. And another god-sent ammunition to attack/blame Ma government.
May 24, 2014    yao1931@
Over the past few months, there happened a series of social unrest in Taiwan—activist student’s occupying the chamber of legislative Yuan, storming the Executive Yuan, surrounding a police station, etc. Now a college student went on a killing spree on a Taipei Metro train. I doubt if the student’s killing spree was as a consequence of what happened with the said activist student’s riots.

May 24, 2014    cia-no@
@cia-yes,

The Ma government recently gave the order to execute several prisoners. Hardly a fortnight later, one coward kills bystanders indiscriminately. So much for the death penalty as a deterrent in Taiwan.
May 25, 2014    mary_chua@
This is isolated case - Taiwan MRT is safe. This man pretends to have mental illness or not - need doctor’s evaluation. If need to add more policemen to protect the commuters - then all forms of transportation is unsafe also. More policemen means more people on the payroll (expenses of the taxpayers)
May 31, 2014    Clarkorion7@
I think, despite this example, it's kind of a good thing that this happened. Hopefully, it will open Taiwanese (who always see everything through rose-coloured glasses) people's eyes as to what happens on a daily basis in many places around the globe. Also, they could start blaming themselves for their bigoted and megalomaniacal thinking (which has an effect on their society as a whole and has likely caused malicious thinking of this assaulter.)
June 16, 2014    rightness123@
cia-no@ wrote:
@cia-yes,

The Ma government recently gave the order to execute several prisoners. Hardly a fortnight later, one coward kills bystanders indiscriminately. So much for the death penalty as a deterrent in Taiwan.
The execution and this dastardly incident are two separate things and the timing is coincidentally close. For most social economic criminals, capital punishment is quite a deterrent. At least it is a fitting punishment and justice for the victims' families.
June 16, 2014    rightness123@
cramos1222@ wrote:
And they say something is wrong in America...its all over the world
Yes, you are right; it is all over the world. But America is the worst with its easy access to guns and high powered weapons.
What this guy did is really nothing compared with the carnages at the US campuses, which are supposedly to be places of study and not venues for mass murders.
June 16, 2014    anna@
rightness123: you wrote 'what this guy did is really nothing…"
You're sick.
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Police cordon off a crime scene at Jiangzicui Station (江子翠站) in New Taipei City, yesterday. A 21-year-old assailant yesterday stabbed dozens of people while riding the MRT. The assailant, covered in blood, was subdued by police at Jiangzicui Station. (CNA)



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