Canada

Woman charged in ‘apparent hate crime’ on Vancouver bus

A woman has been charged in connection with an alleged attack on a young woman and a Good Samaritan that started on a transit bus in Vancouver.

Star Marie Payou, 37, is charged with of one count of assault and one count of assault with a weapon in the May 21 incident that Metro Vancouver Transit Police called an “apparent hate crime.”

Read more: Woman arrested for ‘apparent hate crime’ on Vancouver bus, police say

According to police, a 17-year-old girl and her mother boarded a bus near Pacific Centre Mall in Vancouver when a woman on the bus asked the teen, who was wearing a headscarf, where she was from and if she was Canadian.

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Police said the woman then “ridiculed and mocked the teen’s ethnicity” and became increasingly aggressive, telling her, “Your smile is making me want to punch you in the face.”

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The woman then allegedly punched the teen in the head several times, partially knocking off her headscarf, before the girl’s mother and a fellow passenger managed to separate the two.

A Good Samaritan followed the female suspect when she got off the bus at Hastings Street and Jackson Avenue, and called 911.

When she noticed she was being followed, police said the suspect took off her boots and began hitting the Good Samaritan, who backed off when the suspect allegedly brandished a knife.

Payou is scheduled to make a first appearance in Vancouver provincial court on Sept. 23.

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