[VIDEO UPDATE] Firefighters ‘bumrush’ madman with a meat cleaver to stop attack on woman

Posted at 7:30 PM, Feb 25, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-25 20:07:27-05


A man attacked his young wife with a meat cleaver Sunday morning in Chinatown, a bloody attack that was broken up by nearby firefighters who heard the woman’s screams.

The bloody scene unfolded in front of Fong’s Trading at 74 Canal St. around 10:30 a.m. when an argument between the suspect, identified by the Daily News as a 28-year-old man, and his 23-year-old wife, ended with the man striking her multiple times with a meat cleaver.

Two firefighters across the street at the Engine 9/Ladder 6 firehouse were preparing their rigs for the day when they heard the screams. and helped subdue the man.

Jose Ortiz

18-year FDNY veteran Jose Ortiz describes the moment he stopped a vicious meat-cleaver attack by grabbing the suspect’s arm to prevent him from hitting his wife.

“I saw a man dragging this woman, she’s crying and screaming,” said Jose Ortiz, an 18-year FDNY veteran.  “As I get closer, the man pulls a cleaver out of his waistband and starts hacking at this woman. I’m trying to grab his arms (and) he’s just swinging . . . six, eight, maybe 10 times he hits the woman in the head. So, we both [he and firefighter James Trainor] bum rush him and get him against the fence.”

A fellow firefighter flagged down a passing police car, and officers cuffed and arrested the subdued man.

The woman ran down the block screaming hysterically before ducking into a noodle shop at 13B Eldridge St.  “The woman was covered in blood,” said firefighter Shane Clarke “There was a bit of a language barrier and she was sort of afraid of us.”

She ran out of the restaurant and down the block, but Clarke and three other firefighters were finally able to stop her at 56 E. Broadway, where they treated and bandaged wounds to her abdomen, torso and head.

Paramedics took his wife to Bellevue Hospital, where she is reportedly listed in critical but stable condition.