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By Steve Tawa, Anne-Marie Green

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) —Scores of police officers swarmed a SEPTA bus this morning in Center City Philadelphia in response to the desperate pleas of a driver being choked by a passenger who was armed with a knife.

It was a hectic scene about 10 a.m. at the intersection of 4th and Market Streets.  About a dozen police vehicles surrounded the Route 33 SEPTA bus as officers responded.

According to one witness, a man boarded the bus, and with little warning, began berating and choking the driver.  A bus passenger, Steven Muhammad, says he and another passenger came to the aid of the driver by wrestling the man to the ground.

mohammad stephen  tawa Suspect Identified In Attack On SEPTA Bus Driver

(Steven Muhammad came to the aid of the driver. Credit: Steve Tawa)

Muhammad (right) says that when he saw the man was wearing a knife on a belt, he disarmed the suspect by quickly grabbing the knife and throwing it out the open door of the bus and onto the street.

Police boarded the bus, guns drawn, and quickly nabbed the agitated man, who continued to rant as he was handcuffed and thrown into a police van. He has since been identified as Robert Moore, a 32-year-old from North Granite Street in Melrose, Pa. Moore has been charged with Aggravated Assault, Causing/Risking a Catastrophe, Simple Assault, Resisting Arrest and related offenses.

bus susp Suspect Identified In Attack On SEPTA Bus Driver

(The suspect continues to rant as he is being loaded into a van by police. Credit: Ed Fischer)


The bus driver, who gave his name as Barrington, said he was shaken but not hurt in the altercation.  The suspect was taken to police headquarters for questioning.

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