Racist SkyTrain confrontation caught on camera
Shocking video has surfaced of a racist confrontation between a woman and an elderly Filipino couple on SkyTrain.
According to witnesses, the three passengers were on the Millennium Line heading toward Brentwood Town Centre when the woman started cursing and shouting at the couple Monday afternoon.
Video of the confrontation that was later posted to Facebook shows her yelling, "I was born and raised right here" and "go back to the f---ing Philippines."
Paula Correa, who recorded the video on her cellphone, told CTV News it started because the woman felt the Filipino couple was talking too loudly. According to Correa, the man apologized, and tried to explain that people speak loudly in the Philippines.
But things only got more heated from there, with the couple and the woman yelling at each other and some passengers joining in.
Correa said at one point the woman told the couple to "learn how to speak English," even though that's how they were communicating with her.
"Everything she was saying was ridiculous," Correa said. "The couple was replying to her perfectly fine."
Ashley Klassen also recorded the confrontation and posted the video to social media. Her post has been shared thousands of times, generating many angry responses to the outburst, as well as support for the passengers who defended the couple. One teen in particular is being praised for telling the woman to get off the SkyTrain and leave the couple alone.
"If that was me I'd be shaking in my boots, so I went up to him and I just told him ‘good for you, you should be really proud of yourself,’" said Klassen.
Someone pressed the yellow emergency strip on the SkyTrain car, alerting Transit Police officers, but the woman had already stepped off by the time they boarded.
The department said the suspect has since been identified as a 75-year-old New Westminster resident.
"She is known to police for documented anger related issues in the past but there is nothing documented that would indicate there is a concern for public safety," Transit Police said in a news release.
Multiple videos of the confrontation were posted to Facebook, and have been viewed more than 160,000 times combined. Police said they will be interviewing the people who posted them, then locating the suspect to warn her about her behaviour. While her comments are unpleasant, they aren’t criminal and officials say the only charge that could apply would be one for causing a disturbance.
While she was rattled by the unpleasantness, Klassen was glad to capture it on video for others to see.
"For me it was a very eye-opening experienced I'm born and raised in Canada and I can't say I've ever been directly affected by racism, so to see something like that in such a public explosion was really just made me aware of what different cultures experience when they come to a different country"
With files from CTV Vancouver's Nafeesa Karim and Penny Daflos