Sunday, August 21, 2011

first red line slaying

it's been a busy couple of days for la mta news.  first, there's been a bunch of jibber-jabber about bus bench contracts.  second, the bru adds to its long history of race-baiting campaigns and the la times once again takes the bait.  but the biggest news this weekend has to be the mta's first red line slaying (ok, technically it was on friday, but i've had a busy weekend).

this is, of course, a tragedy from which no good will come.  a person has died, another is on the run from authorities and dozens of riders have been emotionally traumatized.  additionally, nonriders' still-unfounded fears surrounding public transportation will only increase (already evidence of this in the la times' article's comments).  perhaps worst has been the mta's reaction.  their main page and twitter feed have yet to even acknowledge a death, simply citing "police act" for the cause of severe delays.  i can only imagine what the reaction in the coming days is going to be.  security companies will be lining up and lobbying to add their presence so such an act can never happen again.  worst case, we'll have a tsa-style organization patting people down before boarding the train.

as for the events themselves, there's simply not enough information out to know if the stabber was in fact defending himself as he claims.  i've never been threatened with a chain, but i can see how that might put one in a defensive mood.  the mta would do well to release the video or at least a solid mug-shot so that he can be identified.  beyond that, however, i haven't even heard of a chain vs knife rumble since playing "double dragon" at the arcade as a young child.  throw in the skateboards as weapons and, well, it's the first time i've heard of this happening.  also, the times staff witness, "waited for five minutes then left when police still failed to appear."  ok, dude, i know you're just the music writer, but did you really expect lapd or even the sheriffs to respond in 5 minutes?  and even so, it's a murder.  what could possibly be so important that you need to take off after a mere 5 minutes?


  1. alright, so the daily news has some more info. their article says the chain was plastic and that the detectives have elected not to release the surveillance video, though they have not given a reason why. i guess a small risk of general panic is more important than identifying the suspect. or they're so confident of their abilities to find the suspect (like they did with the dodgers game beating), they don't need the help, even though they're asking "for public help with information."

  2. regarding the chain, an earlier la times article has their witness claiming it looked like a bicycle chain. i guess this goes to show that facts remain scant or maybe aren't even "facts" at all.