Thomas Thorpe is accused of stabbing a 64-year-old man at a bus stop in Orlando, Florida, on Wednesday.
Witnesses told Orange County deputies that Thorpe allegedly attacked Donald Sacco and tried to steal his bag when the two got off a bus, notes the Orlando Sentinel.
Thorpe tried to leave the scene after the alleged stabbing, but a witness, Jeffery Hopkins, pulled a gun on him until deputies arrived.
“As I was getting out, I noticed the guy had a knife in his hand so I went for my gun and took him down,” Hopkins told WFTV. “He looked at me very scared. Then realized I was serious and dropped the knife and laid down immediately.”
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Thorpe was charged with attempted first-degree murder, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and robbery.
He appeared in court yesterday, but would not allow a court-appointed black public defender to represent him, reports ClickOrlando.com (video below).
"Do you understand what an attorney is and what they do?" the judge asked Thorpe, who replied, "Yes, they screwed us."
"I said not guilty," Thorpe added. "I pleaded not guilty and I don't want this negro standing next to me. I don't want a negro standing next to me."
There are now questions about Thorpe's mental health, so he is being watched in the Orange County jail where he is being held without bond.
His next court appearance date has not been set.