Two men have been killed after standing up to Muslim hate on a TriMet train in Portland, Oregon.
The men – 53-year-old Ricky Best and Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche – tried to stop a man from abusing two women on a train because they appeared to be Muslim.
Witnesses say 35-year-old Jeremy Joseph Christian approached the two women on the 4.30pm train on Friday and started “ranting and raving”.
Evelin Hernandez, a passenger on the train, told KATU-TV that he said: “Get off the bus, and get out of the country because you don’t pay taxes here”.
When three men including Best and Namkai-Meche, and a third man named Micah Fletcher, tried to intervene to protect the women - Christian allegedly viciously attacked them.
Best died on the train, Namkai-Meche later died in hospital, and Fletcher was treated for non-life threatening injuries.
Officers were able to detain Christian as he alighted the train, but they were unable to talk to the two women, as they had already left the area.
Christian has been charged with two counts of aggravated murder, two counts of intimidation in the second degree, one of attempted murder, and one count of being a felon in possession of a restricted weapon.
In the past, Christian has been convicted for felony robbery, kidnapping and possession of weapons.