Two people were stabbed to death and one got injured on Friday after they reportedly tried to intervene when a man yelled racial abuses at two Muslim women on a light-rail train in Portland, Oregon, US police said. The man was arrested by the police.
Portland Police Sgt. Pete Simpson said that the attacker ranted on several topics while on the Metropolitan Area Express (MAX) light-rail train, and used "hate speech or biased language" while yelling at the women. He added that the passengers were "attacked viciously" when they intervened.
In a statement, the Portland Police Department said: "This investigation started on Friday May 26, 2017, at 4:30 p.m., when North Precinct and Transit Police Division officers responded to the report of a disturbance on an eastbound MAX train at the Hollywood Transit Station involving a male who stabbed two other people."
"Multiple officers responded to the area and, while en route, learned that the suspect got off the train and was leaving the area on foot towards Providence Medical Center," the statement added.
The police considered the attacker's rant as hate speech. The statement further added that the man was in custody of the police and that there was no further threat to the public.
Simpson said that one person was dead at the scene and another died at a hospital. The third person was taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The police confirmed that the three victims did not know the attacker and were only trying to protect the passengers travelling in the train.
However, the authorities said that it is still not known whether the man was in an inebriated state or was under the influence of drugs or had mental health issues.