Man arrested in bias attack on New Jersey bus after allegedly spouting racial slurs

PARAMUS, New Jersey (WABC) -- Police have arrested a man they say was responsible for a hate-filled verbal assault that could have turned into a violent encounter on a Jitney bus in New Jersey.

The incident was reported May 2 just before 4 p.m. on bus on Route 4 eastbound in Paramus.

The Spanish Transportation Enterprise Jitney bus was heading from Paterson to New York.

It all started when police say the man stepped on the Indian victim's foot as he passed him when he got on the bus.

"As he was passing the victim, he stepped on the victim's foot," Detective Sal Cosentino said. "The victim then said to him, along the lines of, 'What are you doing, be careful.'"

After the victim sat down, police said the suspect moved closer and started to harass him. He told the victim his family killed his father and accused him of being a terrorist and responsible for the 9/11 attacks.

Police say this assault went on for 12 minutes, while the victim remained calm. Authorities say the suspect then spit at the victim and pulled out a box cutter while making slashing motions toward him.

The bus driver tried to intervene, but things went from bad to worse.

The suspect then demanded the driver stop the bus and allegedly told the victim to get off or he would kill him. The victim exited the back of the bus and called police.

Paramus police say a tip led them to 51-year-old Victor Colon, of Hackensack, who was later arrested.

He is charged with bias intimidation, terroristic threats, and aggravated assault with a weapon.

Anyone with additional information is asked to call the Paramus Police Department at 201-262-3400 ext. 1415 or use our anonymous TIPS app located at www.paramuspolice.org.

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