Portland stabbing attack survivor tells city's Muslim community they 'are loved'

The man charged in the fatal stabbing of two men after allegedly spewing hate at two young women in a Portland metro train took his first court hearing as an opportunity to blurt out ramblings about "patriotism" and told those in attendance to "die".

Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche, 23, and Ricky John Best, 53, were killed Friday as they tried to stop Jeremy Joseph Christian from harassing the women, one of whom was wearing a hijab, authorities say. "We need American here", "I don't care if you are ISIS", and "Free speech or die". He wore a blue jail jumpsuit and didn't say anything other than to yell slogans, including "Death to the enemies of America". Leave this country if you hate our freedom.

A defiant Jeremy Joseph Christian made his first appearance Tuesday afternoon before Judge Paul G. Crowley at the Multnomah Justice Center. "I just hope that people are listening and try to do something about it", he said at the time.

He has been appointed public defenders.

"He knew something was wrong, got off the train, saw Micah in bad shape and calling for help - he just went over and helped him", Janice Heater said.

Fletcher, who is still in the hospital recovering, penned a poem in the aftermath of the attack.

Fletcher shoved back and told him to get off the train, the affidavit added.

At some point, according to Macy, one of the men tried to move Christian who then struck out, stabbing the men. "Our prayers are with them".

In a tweet posted on the presidential twitter handle, rather than his personal one, he said: "The violent attacks in Portland on Friday are unacceptable".

Online funding pages have emerged for the families of the two slain men, the injured man and the girls who survived the attack.

The murders were a shock to the Muslim community in Portland, as The Oregonian reports, having occurred near the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan.

"And then we turned around while they were fighting, and he just started stabbing people, and it was just blood everywhere, and we just started running for our lives", Mangum said. "Like, I don't know what to do after that, you know".

Mayor Ted Wheeler said Monday that the community is sad and angry, and the rallies are inappropriate and could be unsafe.

Mr Myrddin Namkai-Meche's eldest brother told The Independent he was not surprised by the young man's actions. Fletcher was released from the hospital Monday night and was present during Christian's arraignment.

In a public Facebook post, Namkai-Meche's mother wrote "He was a hero and will remain a hero". She says such a step would deeply honor her son's sacrifice. Christian didn't enter a plea and has another court date set on June 7. On April 29, Christian participated in a right-wing "March for Free Speech" on 82nd Avenue in Montavilla, Portland, carrying a baseball bat in an attempt to assault left-wing protesters. Police said they'll examine what appears to be Christian's extremist ideology, including social media postings indicating an affinity for Nazis and political violence.

  • Larry Hoffman