Metro Vancouver transit police are investigating a racist tirade on a TransLink bus last Friday that saw a Burnaby man threatened.
“I’m a little bit paranoid now,” Danilo Jr. Jimenez, who came to Canada from the Philippines three years ago, told Global News, Sunday.
“I’m still seeing his face, sometimes in my dreams. And I’m afraid of my security, my life.”
It happened on the 123 Brentwood around 7:15 Friday morning.
Jimenez said a man boarded the bus and immediately swearing at him, calling him a Chinese spy, using racial slurs and threatening to sexually assault his daughter.
“So I’m thinking, like, security for my life, I took my cell phone and took a video,” he said.
In the video, a Caucasian man can be seen threatening Jimenez and calling him a “goof Chinaman” along with other racial slurs.
He then gets up and approaches Jimenez, demanding the camera and trying to grab it.
“You want to get shot in the head?” the man asks, incorrectly claiming Jimenez is not allowed to film him.
The bus driver then yells at the man to stop, at which point he moves to the back of the bus while continuing to yell racist slurs. As he gets off the bus he yells “you’re dead.”
No one else on the bus intervened, Jimenez said.
Police in the region have documented a surge in anti-Asian hate crimes since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A report presented to the Vancouver Police Board Thursday pointed to a staggering 878 per cent increase in hate crimes targeting Asian people in 2020.
“Every (person) should be respected. I went to Canada to have a better life, to have a better future for my family,” Jimenez said.
“I feel sorry about that guy. Maybe he needs help, like a mental institution or something. Right now he should be not in the public.”
Transit police Const. Mike Yake said officers had spoken to Jimenez, but were in the “early stages” of their investigation.
“We have not connected this incident to any calls received by the Metro Vancouver Transit Police,” Yake said.
“The words that were used by the man in the video are disgusting and disturbing. Passengers using our transit system have the right to travel without fear of harassment.”
Yake urged anyone who witnesses a similar situation to contact transit police by text at 87.77.77 or phone at 604.515.8300.