A 29-year-old man from Surrey is in custody following a violent attack on a SkyTrain attendant.
On Sunday, July 25 at approximately 7:10 a.m., a man followed a SkyTrain attendant at Braid Station as she went into an employee crew room, positioning himself directly outside the door and allegedly began engaging in an obscene act.
When the SkyTrain attendant opened the office door a short time later, the man quickly forced the door open and entered the crew room. The suspect allegedly punched the SkyTrain attendant in the stomach before shoving her to the ground. The SkyTrain attendant fought her attacker as he attempted to pull her to the ground, punching her in the head and pulling her hair. She was eventually able to open the crew room door, with the suspect still trying to drag her back in, before she was finally able to free herself from him.
Transit Police were on scene within minutes and arrested the suspect who was attempting to leave the station.
Transit Police said they would like to commend the SkyTrain attendant for her bravery and courage. Not only was she able to fight off her attacker, but also was able to simultaneously use her radio effectively, allowing police to respond quickly.
Arrested and charged with one count of assault with a weapon was 29-year-old Howard Geddes Skelding of Surrey who is very well known to police. Transit Police have recommended several additional charges including sexual assault, indecent act, forcible confinement and robbery. Geddes Skelding was remanded in custody and his next court appearance is scheduled for August 11 at 9 a.m. in New Westminster Provincial Court.
“I commend this employee for her bravery in fending off a violent attack. Everyone has the right to feel safe while on the transit system, including the frontline employees who look after the safety of others and keep the system moving. Transit Police encourages everyone to be our eyes and ears. Text Transit Police at 87.77.77, or call 911 in an emergency, if you are worried about the safety of transit staff during your transit journey,” said Sgt. Clint Hampton.