Investigation continues following knife attack aboard PVTA bus

(Photo: Facebook / Hadley Police)

Passengers aboard a PVTA bus in Hadley experienced a dangerous ride Wednesday after police say a woman slashed two people in the throat.

Hadley Police Chief Michael Mason said that shortly after 4 p.m. Wednesday, police were called to Route 9, in the area of Friendly's, after a passenger pulled out a knife and threatened others on-board the bus.

PVTA administrator Sandra Sheehan told Western Mass News that that bus was one on their B43 route, which takes passengers from downtown Northampton to downtown Amherst.

"The caller advised that multiple passengers on the bus had disarmed this person but were still struggling," Mason explained.

Police arrived and found that two people has been cut by the suspect and had injuries to their throats.

The injured reported to investigators that the suspect - identified by police as 26-year-old Brietta Brown - slashed their throats in what police said was an unprovoked attack.

The driver of the bus suffered minor injuries to his hand from the knife, then also suffered chest pain as police arrived.

Western Mass News spoke with a witness who saw the chaos just as the bus had stopped

"I saw a bunch of people get out. I was confused because I know the stop is right there and I kind of assumed something wasn't right and I took the trash back out. Next thing I know, there was about eight cops, two ambulances," said Jacob Graveline.

The two victims and the bus driver were transported by ambulance to area hospitals and are all expected to recover.

Sheehan told Western Mass News they are appreciative of the efforts of the passengers that assisted in restraining the suspect, as well as commends Hadley Police for their quick response. In addition, the agency noted that they intend to fully cooperate with any investigations.

"Passenger safety is our number one priority and while we find this isolated incident to be alarming, we want to assure all of our passengers that our buses are safe and that we are committed to passenger safety," Sheehan said in a statement.

The PVTA added that they will be conducting an internal review of the incident with the companies with which they contract to operate their vehicles.

Brown is charged with two counts of attempted murder, one count of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and one count of disturbing the peace. She was arraigned Thursday in Eastern Hampshire District Court and ordered held without the right to bail pending a dangerousness hearing, which is scheduled for Wednesday, May 9.

Western Mass News will continue to follow this story and will have more information as it becomes available.

Copyright 2018 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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