The Guardian (Charlottetown)

Witness describes racial attack in downtown Halifax

- FRANCIS CAMPBELL THE CHRONICLE HERALD fcampbell@herald.ca @frankscrib­bler

Maureen C. Brennan thought she might be witnessing a murder on a busy Halifax street.

“There is no question in my mind,” Brennan said of the assault she witnessed on Spring Garden Road on July 21 that could have resulted in the victim’s death had he not fallen backwards after being stabbed several times, cracking his head violently on the sidewalk.

“They had already stabbed him three times,” Brennan said. “If he had not fallen back, they would have continued stabbing him.

“What’s on replay for me is this gentleman with his hands up in the air and already being stabbed.”

Brennan used that replay for a detailed statement she emailed to Halifax Regional Police about the attack.

A retired airline worker, Brennan said she left on foot from the Barrington Street office in which she was doing contract work for Service Nova Scotia, at about 4:40 p.m., and turned up Spring Garden Road, where she chatted with a friend.

The pair heard yelling that evolved into screaming, she said. Brennan said she saw a group of young people — a woman and three men —yelling at a tall, slim Black man in front of Tim Hortons.

The four pursued the Black man, yelling swear words and an offensive racial slur word, and fashioned weapons out of some glass, Brennan said. She says she was within two metres of the man holding the weapon and told him “don’t do this,” but the aggressor slashed the victim on both of his arms and on the left side of his body as one of the foursome yelled to “kill him.”

The victim then fell backwards, hitting the back of his head and opening a large gash.

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