The Blotter

The Times' criminal justice team looks behind the scenes and behind the headlines.

August 24, 2011 at 4:04 PM

Suspect in Metro bus stabbing charged with assault

Posted by John de Leon

A 38-year-old homeless man accused of stabbing another man during a fight that began aboard a Metro bus on Sunday has been charged with second-degree assault. Alphonse Hope, of Seattle, was also charged Wednesday with fourth-degree assault for allegedly attacking the victim's mother.

Hope is being held in the King County Jail in lieu of $250,000 bail. He will be arraigned Sept. 7 at the King County Courthouse.

According to charging documents, Hope was on a Metro bus at about 3 p.m. Sunday when he became increasingly belligerent with different passengers. At one point he threw an empty beer bottle at a passenger leaving the bus, hitting him in the head with the bottle, the documents said. The man left and did not contact police.

The stabbing victim was riding on the same bus along with six of his family members, according to the charging documents. While attempting to move to the front of the bus to inform his family of their upcoming stop, he asked Hope, who was blocking his path, to let him pass.

Police said Hope initiated an argument with the man and pushed and kicked him to the floor as the man tried to walk away. Seattle police said the man tried to ignore the assault until a woman with Hope began hitting several of the man's family members, charging papers allege.

It was then that the man decided to defend himself and his family and got into a fistfight with Hope in the aisle of the bus, police said. When the victim' mother tried to intervene, she was struck by Hope, according to charging papers.

When the bus came to a stop, the brawling men spilled onto the sidewalk just north of the intersection of Third Avenue and Pine Street, according to police. During the ensuing fight, Hope stabbed the 30-year-old man, police said.

The victim was taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle with non-life-threatening injuries. He was released on Monday.

The victim spoke with Times news partner KING-TV. His interview can be read by clicking here.

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