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VicPD officer survives knife attack thanks to training, Good Samaritans
Victoria police Const. Lane Douglas-Hunt was just holding the door to the 7-Eleven store open for a man, when he attacked her with a knife.
Her impeccable physical condition and recent training on defence against edged weapons helped save her life, her mother said.
"Her fitness, her quickness is what saved her," Mary Douglas-Hunt said from Royal Jubilee Hospital Tuesday, while waiting for her daughter to pull through surgery on her left hand.
"She had just been through training with (knives) so she did everything textbook. So we're very happy she's still with us."
Lane, 24, had been working on an investigation into the theft of a chocolate bar from a convenience store in the 800-block of Douglas Street. She normally works with a partner, but special circumstances separated them Monday morning.
The 57-year-old man, known to police, targeted Lane because of her police uniform, VicPD Chief Jamie Graham said.
The fight that ensued cut Lane's neck and right hand, and did severe damage to her left hand as she blocked the knife blade from her body.
"It's very, very frightening," Mary said. "She went into warrior mode."
With her attacker pinning her to the ground, Lane had the clarity of mind to yell at nearby pedestrians to stay back, in consideration for their safety, said Sgt. Grant Hamilton.
Meanwhile, Saanich resident Blair Bater, 45, couldn't help noticing a woman was in need of help as he drove on Douglas Street. Bater stopped his car and jumped out, asking Lane whether she needed help. She said yes.
"It was just reaction, I just seen somebody that needed my hand," Bater said.
Bater lunged at the attacker, then held him to the ground on his stomach, with Bater's knee in the man's back.
Soon, Rob Caunter, who works for the Downtown Victoria Business Association joined in, helping to restrain the man.
Lane's hands were so badly damaged she couldn't operate her handcuffs. She passed them to Bater, who cuffed the attacker.
Police officers arrived and took the suspect in custody. Guy Herve Seguin remains in custody, charged with attempted murder.
Bater said Lane's uniform is not what compelled him to help.
"I just saw a lady that needed help," he said.
His generally negative attitude toward police officers "didn't become part of that process. If it was anybody getting stabbed, you know – the uniform doesn't change anything."
Lane has already indicated to Graham she hopes to return to work soon, although her mother said she'll have to stay away from her normal training routine of two hours a day, for about eight weeks.
"I'll tell you it's a blessing two citizens came forward to help her and protect her, but that girl pretty much took care of herself," Mary said.
Const. Lane Douglas-Hunt, 24, was just 21 when she started with VicPD.
She was top of her class at the Justice Institute of B.C. – the police training academy – in terms of fitness.
She attended Oak Bay High, but graduated from Lambrick Park secondary school, where she transferred for basketball.
She went on to play basketball for Capilano College in 2004 before she became a reserve officer in Victoria.
Her parents, Cliff Hunt and Mary Douglas-Hunt, live in Oak Bay.