Bay Area Rapid Transit police in Northern California arrested a suspect Monday in the stabbing death of a woman at a train station.
"(It's) probably one of the most vicious attacks I've ever seen", said BART police Chief Carlos Rojas. "Her sister was bleeding profusely by the neck - her entire torso was covered in blood", said Nicole Mickels, who witnessed the attack while exiting a train that had just arrived at MacArthur station.
After the attack, she looked back and said he was "wiping off his knife and stood at the stairs".
He was released from state prison on May 6 after completing a two-year sentence for second-degree robbery, said Vicky Waters, spokeswoman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
The killing was the third possible homicide on the BART line in just five days, accoring to the San Francisco Chronicle.
Nia Wilson and her sister, 26-year-old Lahtifa Wilson, were both stabbed in the neck in an unprovoked attack while waiting to transfer to another train on their way home from a family gathering.
"I am supposed to be planning her graduation, not her funeral", said Ansar El Muhammad.
Police said an officer verified Cowell's probation status and then found drugs in his possession when he searched him.
Items comprising the makeshift memorial were placed there there to commemorate 18-year-old Nia Wilson, fatally stabbed Sunday night at the station Sunday night by a stranger. Her sister was being treated at a local hospital.
It had been closed since 9.45pm Pacific on Sunday, as police began their investigation into the attack. "As young black women, we shouldn't have to look behind our back you know, we should be living freely like everybody else", said Wilson.
Wilson says she was with Nia and another sister and heading home from a family function when Cowell attacked at the MacArthur train station.
A woman places a candle on the ground during a candlelight vigil for Nia Wilson at the MacArthur BART station in Oakland, Calif., on Monday, July 23, 2018.
Station video cameras captured Cowell fleeing the station.
This undated Facebook photo shows Nia Wilson.
She was "spunky, feisty, loved to dance", she said. She says when other BART passengers attempted to stop Cowell, he ran from the scene.
The family has received an outpouring of support in Oakland and on the internet. Cowell pulled a knife and a replica gun on an El Cerrito supermarket clerk who confronted him over stealing, court records show. "They asked him what his name was". He's been in & out of jail, had a restraining order against him after he threatened to kill an employee in 2016, and just got off parole 4 months ago. Monroe said. "And he did this for no reason". Police sirens are heard blaring in the background as the crowd continues to viciously pummel the unnamed man.
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