‘This would’ve been a homicide.’ Stamford police credit EMS, surgeon for lifesaving actions in bus stabbing

Police recently arrested Olajuwon Raheem Clarke, 29, following an investigation into the Nov. 20 incident.

Marissa Alter

Dec 21, 2023, 11:28 PM

Updated 152 days ago


A stabbing on a Connecticut Transit bus last month likely would’ve been deadly if not for the quick actions of Stamford EMS and Stamford Hospital staff, according to Stamford police.
“Without that expertise being there, this would've been another homicide,” Sgt. Sean Boger told News 12.
Police recently arrested Olajuwon Raheem Clarke, 29, following an investigation into the Nov. 20 incident.  Around 1:30 p.m. that day, police were called to the bus stop on West Main Street near Harvard Avenue for a report of a man who'd been stabbed in the chest.
“All state buses are equipped with surveillance systems inside and outside including audio so the whole actual event was captured on video,” Boeger explained.
Boeger said the video shows Clarke board the bus and get into an argument with the victim. The two men didn’t know each other, and the victim was pretty drunk, according to Boeger. Then things turned physical. Boeger said Clarke pulled out what some witnesses said was a knife and stabbed the victim twice.
“They were in a critical area of the victim’s heart, so the EMS realizing that, prepping him, getting him to the emergency room quickly was very instrumental in saving this man's life,” Boeger explained.
He said so was a cardiac surgeon who only works at the hospital once a month.
“They made a decision to open the victim up right there in the emergency room, and the surgeon was able to see that he had suffered a critical puncture to his heart, and the surgeon literally plugged the puncture with his finger for about 15-20 minutes until the OR was prepped, and they could rush him in there and tend to his wounds,” Boeger told News 12, adding that the victim is still in the hospital recovering.
Police said Clarke ran off after the stabbing, but investigators were able to identify him and get an arrest warrant based on their evidence. Boeger said when police went to arrest him, they found out the NYPD already had picked him up on a larceny charge. Clarke was then arrested by law enforcement there on Dec. 15 as a fugitive from justice. He was held at Rikers Island until Dec. 19 when he was turned over to Stamford police.
“When we finally extradited the suspect, he gave a full confession and admitted to the fact that he'd stabbed the victim,” Boeger stated.
Clarke was arraigned Dec. 20 on charges of assault, breach of peace and possession of a dangerous instrument. During that hearing, the judge tacked on a contempt of court charge and raised Clarke’s bond to $1 million.
Court records show Clarke has multiple larceny convictions out of Stamford Superior Court.

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