Stabbing could result in Muni lawsuit

When Benito Casados Jr. stepped on the 14-Mission bus Oct. 11, he had no idea he would get off the bus 30 minutes later with a stab wound to his chest.

Casados, 50, is the good Samaritan who stepped in when a man slapped an elderly woman on the bus. The good deed earned him a trip to the hospital and may result in a lawsuit against The City because he said he feels the bus driver failed to ensure his safety.

A recent member of The City’s Mental Health Board who has a history of mental illness, he works at a nonprofit as a peer case aide for seniors with mental health disabilities.

At 12:45 p.m., he boarded the 14-Mission bus at the corner of Sixth and Mission streets. The suspect in the case boarded at the same location, Casados said.

They both sat near the front of the bus, and the suspect sat next to the elderly woman, Casados said. The suspect called her a b—- and said her elbow was in his side, Casados said. When the bus reached 14th Street, the suspect again called the woman a b—- and slapped her with the back of his hand, Casados said.

“I got up and went over to the lady, took her by the hand and brought her over to my side of the aisle and sat her down next to me,” Casados said.

The man then verbally assaulted Casados and threatened to follow him to his stop, Casados said.

When the bus arrived at 16th and Mission streets, the driver asked passengers to move from the front of the bus to accommodate a passenger in a wheelchair, Casados said.

Casados said he looked behind him as he moved and “saw the gentleman coming at me with a knife.”

Casados said he managed to block two attempts by the suspect to stab him. “At that point, the bus driver came up. He said, ‘Guys, break it up’” Casados said.

When the driver returned to the front of the bus, “the gentleman … stabbed me in the left side of my chest,” Casados said.

The suspect fled as the driver called the police, Casados said.

Muni commended the driver at the time of the incident but declined to comment on Casados’ allegations that the driver failed to protect Casados.

dsmith@examiner.com

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