Casino knife attack

A 44-year old man in Canada has been arrested after attacking another man with a meat cleaver as his 78-year old victim played in the McPhillips Street Station Casino in Winnipeg.

The attack appears to have been totally unprovoked as it is not thought that the pair knew each other beforehand. The victim is currently still in hospital but, according to Police, he is in a stable condition and thought to make a full recovery.

Police have charged Teresito Santos Saqui with aggravated assault, possession of a dangerous weapon and a breach of bail conditions.

Witnesses saw Saqui charge towards the man, who was playing Pai Gow Poker, and hit him three or four times before he was restrained and brought down to the floor by casino staff. Two off-duty firemen from Ontario then tended to the man’s wounds.

“The guy had a small kitchen meat cleaver, the blade about four inches long, the handle wrapped in clear tape,” said one witness who was playing at a neighbouring table.

Susan Olynik, a spokeswoman for Manitoba Lotteries who own and operate the casino, said an investigation has begun trying to discover if Saqui was in the casino before the attack and how he was able to get a weapon inside the casino.

The second part of that investigation shouldn’t take too long since no one is searched before they enter the casino but Olynik stresses that there has never been anything like that before.

"An incident of this nature is unprecedented in the casinos of Winnipeg and is, in fact, very rare in the industry,” said Olynik.

"I want to stress it was an isolated incident, and the casinos remain very safe."

Editor, - 2007-02-16 10:52:59

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