No indictment for man accused of fatal TARC bus stabbing

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by WHAS11 editors

WHAS11.com

Posted on March 26, 2014 at 1:31 PM

Updated Thursday, Mar 27 at 8:55 AM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- A news conference was held Wednesday afternoon by Louisville Metro Police Chief Steven Conrad and Commonwealth Attorney Thomas Wine regarding a stabbing that resulted in the death of a 14-year-old boy.

The grand jury will not indict Anthony Allen who is accused of stabbing Me'Quale Offutt and a 13-year-old girl on a TARC bus last week.

The case was presented Wednesday morning to the grand jury and the “No True Bill” was officially entered in Division One of Jefferson Circuit Court by Judge Barry Willett Wednesday afternoon.

WHAS11's Renee Murphy was at the press conference where screens were set up to show the security video from TARC.

According to LMPD, four people on the bus said Allen shoved the girl, but the female victim didn't give a clear statement about the assault.

Officials originally believed Allen was the aggressor due to witness statements, where witnesses said Allen did not try to retreat from the juveniles, but upon watching the video, officials said the statements didn't match.

The Commonwealth Attorney said prosecutors showed the tape to the grand jury and after viewing, they chose to not indict Allen and Allen was released from jail.

The LMPD police chief said the reason they are showing the video is because they want the public to see exactly what the grand jury saw.

According to the video, Allen entered the bus and sat down and then began yelling at the bus driver.  The driver yelled at Allen, telling him she was going to call someone to get him off the bus.

A little later, the teens got on the bus and sat in the back. Allen then moved closer to the kids and they said something to him.  After that, police said he started yelling at them.

The exchange between the teens and Allen continued, prompting the driver to call for help.

On the video, Allen appeared to be taunting the teens and asked them if they wanted to "try him."

When Allen went to leave the bus, the doors didn't open and both teens stood up and moved toward him.  The teens held up their fists while approaching him and the girl appears to swing at him.

Allen held his hand up in defense and the fight broke out. Allen was kicked in the face.

The stabbing then occurred and both teens were injured.  Offutt died a couple days later at University of Louisville Hospital.

Offutt's mother did not review the video, according to police. She said Allen should still be facing lesser charges for inciting and escalating the situation with the teens.

Allen's daughter, Anitra, said she talked with her father today after he was released from jail. She said he left town and does not plan on returning to Louisville.

She said they are sorry for the pain everyone is feeling, but belives the Grand Jury made the right call because her father was attacked by the kids on the bus.

Christopher 2X, a local activist, is asking young people to not act out after Allen is released from jail.

TARC’s Executive Director J. Barry Barker released the following statement:

“Safety is TARC’s top priority for our passengers, drivers and the general public. TARC is increasing security in and around our buses. We are also working with Metro Government and Metro Police in these efforts.

TARC has not had an opportunity to closely review the video that was shown today and which has been in police possession.  TARC will review all information available to fully understand what happened and to determine what steps can be taken to further improve safety and security.

Our thoughts go out to the victims, families and others impacted by recent violence.”

The video is now with the County Attorney's Office who will decide if any of the teens involved should face charges for starting the fight.

On Sunday at 1 p.m. there will be a walk across the Big Four Bridge in response to the violence last week. Mayor Greg Fischer will be at the event.

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