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Man stabbed, killed on Red Line in Hollywood

August 19, 2011 |  9:50 pm

A man was stabbed to death on the Red Line subway in Hollywood late Friday evening, and the assailant  remains at large, authorities said.

Todd Martens, a Times staffer who witnessed the stabbing, said it took place after a dispute on the train.

A rider holding what looked like a bike chain got into an argument with another passenger. The man with the chain "started swinging wildly.... He was flailing his chain, but it wasn't really hitting the guy. He just seemed crazy," Martens said.

The other man, who was holding two skateboards and a bag, then pulled out a small knife, prompting bystanders to scurry to the back of the car. The man stabbed the chain-wielding victim in his chest. The stabber stepped back, and said, "Oh, no, why did you make me do that?" Martens said.

The victim collapsed and began shaking.

The subway operator momentarily stopped the train just after the Hollywood/Western stop. The stabber slumped to the floor of the train, near the door, asking for help.

"You saw him attack me, right? Please say you did," he asked other passengers, according to Martens.

In his bag, the man, who appeared to be in his 20s, had what looked to be a brand new blue shirt in shrink-wrap. Two other passengers encouraged him to change out of his bloodied clothes.

The assailant put on the new shirt and stuffed the bloodied shirt into the bag. The train stopped at the Hollywood/Vine station, the doors opened and he bolted.

"I waited a couple minutes for the cops. They weren't there. Kids were crying. Blood was everywhere," Martens said.

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-- Robert Faturechi (twitter.com/RobertFaturechi)

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