Stabbed TriMet driver forgives his attacker

Stabbed TriMet driver forgives his attacker

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by Jeff Thompson, KGW.com Staff

kgw.com

Posted on October 18, 2013 at 8:56 AM

PORTLAND -- The TriMet bus driver stabbed during a violent rampage in October, 2012 said he forgives his attacker.

Video just released Thursday shows Austin Vanhagen, then 19, pushing his way onto the bus and up stabbing several passengers and the driver, Leonard James.

“He only stabbed me once, but he made it count,” James recalled. “He cut my lower intestine.”

Other passengers grabbed Vanhagen and held him until police showed up. He was arrested and this week was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

James said he feels sorry for the young man.

“I just want this kid to get help,” he said. “He's obviously really disturbed. Something has to be done for this guy. He's just young.”

And he said he plans to continue driving for TriMet.

“I learned a long time ago to do what makes me happy,” he said. “So when I'm not happy doing this anymore, I'll move on.”

More: Security video shows stabbing rampage on TriMet bus

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KGW reporter Mike Benner contributed to this report.

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