Late in the evening on Wednesday, July 30th, approximately three dozen passengers watched, screaming in horror as Vince Weiguang Li, 40, suddenly started stabbing a sleeping man beside him 40 to 60 times, decapitating him then waiving the head at fellow bus travelers. After the driver pulled over, the bus driver, a passenger and the driver of a truck trapped Li inside the bus as passengers fled the bloody scene. At this time LE does not believe the victim, Tim McLean, 22 and his assailant knew each other. The random attack appeared to be unprovoked according to several witnesses.
The Greyhound bus had made it's last stop in Brandon, Manitoba on a long journey that originated in Edmonton, Alberta and headed for Winnipeg. The attack occurred approximately 12 miles west of Portage La Prairie, on a desolate plains stretch of the Trans Canada Highway. Men, women and children who witnessed the attack were in shock, crying, some becoming physically ill as they waited by the roadside for several hours while police tried to get Li to exit the bus. He was finally apprehended at 1:28 am after Li tried to break out of a bus window.
"He didn't do anything to provoke the guy. The guy just took a knife out and stabbed him, started stabbing him like crazy and cut his head off," said Garnet Caton, 26, a passenger on the Edmonton-to- Winnipeg bus.
"He calmly walks up to the front [of the bus] with the head in his hand and the knife and just calmly stares at us and drops the head right in front of us," Mr Caton said.
"There was no rage in him... It was just like he was a robot or something," he added.
The attack appeared to be unprovoked and it is thought the killer did not know his victim.The passengers, many of whom were badly shaken by what they witnessed, were taken to a hotel in Brandon, Manitoba, and were given crisis counselling.
Canton also indicated that right before the attack, Li had just changed seats to sit next to his victim. Tim McLean, who had boarded the bus in Edmonton, was a summer carnival worker for the past three years at Vancouver's Pacific National Exhibition.
On Friday, a bruised and bandaged Li appeared in court in Portage La Prairie, where he was charged with second degree murder. Li said few words and nodded his head when Judge Rocky Pollack asked him if he was exercising his right not to speak. Pollack ordered a psychological evaluation of Li pending Li having the opportunity to speak to an attorney. Li worked for a MacDonald's in Edmonton as well as delivering newspapers for a distribution firm. His delivery employer, Vincent Augert said,
"I believe he was having some marital problems." When he met with Li to hire him back as a newspaper distributor, he said, "you could almost read between the lines" from the way Li was talking "that there was something not right there."
Just as the bus was leaving Brandon, McLean sent a text message to his father, asking if he could come home for a night, Tim McLean, Sr., told CBS news. That was his last communication with his son. Friends of McLean bonded together to grieve for a man described as a "sweet man," a "ladies man," a "bright and bubbly guy who who was always out for fun." One friend, who traveled with him had nicknamed McLean "Tiny Tim."
I can't imagine the terror that these passengers went through, having to witness this horrific event. Please leave a condolence message for the family of Tim McLean, here, who's bright life ended so tragically.
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