‘All in blood’: Vancouver delivery worker describes terrifying random stabbing

Click to play video: 'Food delivery worker recalls attack in Vancouver’s Chinatown'
Food delivery worker recalls attack in Vancouver’s Chinatown
Global News exclusive: The recent immigrant to Canada who was stabbed and almost killed in Vancouver's Chinatown in early September has recovered enough to talk about the life-altering attack. Kristen Robinson reports. – Sep 26, 2022

WARNING: This story contains graphic details that may be disturbing to some readers. Discretion is advised. 

The Vancouver food delivery worker who survived a potentially deadly stabbing earlier this month has recovered enough to tell his story.

Hamidullah Habibi, 26, suffered multiple stab wounds, including to his chest and throat, while dropping a meal off in Chinatown around 6 p.m. on Sept. 11.

The man accused of the apparently random attack, 43-year-old Dennis Prasad, has been arrested and charged and remains in police custody.

Read more: 22-year-old newcomer ‘violently’ attacked in unprovoked Chinatown stabbing

In an interview Monday, Habibi — who came to Canada from Afghanistan five months ago — said he never imagined something like this would happen to him in a country with Canada’s international reputation for affluence and safety.

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“Canada have wonderful people you know, they are kind and nice and respectful,” he said.

“I wasn’t ever expecting that to happen to me.”

Click to play video: 'Refugee attacked in random Vancouver Chinatown stabbing'
Refugee attacked in random Vancouver Chinatown stabbing

Habibi said he had never seen the man who attacked him prior to the incident.

He first encountered the man as he was locking up his bike to make a delivery, he said.

“The guy he was looking at me, and he came to me and grabbed my bag handle. He said that it is a nice bike, I said I know, and just turned to my right side to lock my bike, and I was not expecting he was going to attack,” he said.

Habibi said as he turned away and tried to lock his bike up, the man suddenly produced a knife from his pocket.

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Read more: Man charged in random Vancouver stabbing that left victim with ‘life-altering’ injuries

“He was approaching me, I turned my left side to stop him from attacking me — this guy, he starts stabbing me. Everything was happening so fast, I don’t remember most of this,” he said.

“I feeling something in my throat, that I can’t breathe, and (a) lady starts shouting, ‘You’re bleeding, just hold your neck,’ when I notice that I’m bleeding, and I’m trying to call 911, but I couldn’t because my phone screen was all in blood.”

Click to play video: 'One man charged with two Vancouver knife attacks'
One man charged with two Vancouver knife attacks

In the aftermath of the attack bystanders rushed to Habibi’s aid, calling 911 and providing towels to help stop the bleeding until paramedics could rush him to hospital.

Klara McCallum, who was training a nurse at a nearby pharmacy at the time, was among those who rushed to help.

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“At the first looked like a couple of guys, some buddies having a little wrestle. It was not the case,” she said.

“Cars were honking, they were on the road. By the time we started making moves, we had the attacker basically walking by us with a really big blade, knife, so we knew that was not OK.”

McCallum said Habibi was in shock, and offered to take care of his bike while he was treated in hospital.

She got his name and number, and has stayed in touch with him as he recovered.

Read more: Martial artist brings knife defence class to Vancouver as violent crime continues

“He’s having a hard time talking, he does cough quite a bit because of the stab wound in the neck, he’s been taking this really bravely,” she said.

“He just wanted to get on with his life after this. However, it is not as easy and I think he’s realizing that. He’s doing as best as he can after an event like this.”

Habibi, who required surgery and at least 20 staples in his neck, said he is improving but remains in pain and continues to have trouble sleeping.

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He said he remains grateful for McCallum’s help, along with the support of dozens of people who have contributed to a GoFundMe that has raised more than $27,000 to support his recovery.

“After the surgery I am facing so much problems in my face, in my right hand. It’s going to be maybe worse or maybe good, I don’t know. I’m worried, the future, maybe I will be able to work or no,” he said.

“This was not my plan. With so much energy I try and work, do my job.”

Prasad, who is also charged with stabbing another man the day before Habibi was attacked, is due in court on Tuesday.

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