July 12, 2020

Unruly passengers beat bus driver to death over mask rules in France

Paris: A French bus driver, Philippe Monguillot (59), died in hospital on Friday followed by an attack by the passengers who refused to wear facemasks.

Philippe Monguillot, 59, was declared brain dead by the doctors at the hospital following the attack and died in the hospital on Friday. His 18-year old daughter Marie told AFP, “We decided to let him go. The doctors were in favour and we were as well”.

According to the local prosecutor’s office, two of them aged 22 and 23, with a previous criminal history, have been charged with attempted murder, two other for non-assistance to a person in danger and another with attempting to hide a suspect.
In the south-western town of Bayonne on Sunday (July 5), Monguillot tried to obey the mandatory coronavirus rules in France and requested three passengers to wear their masks and tried to check another man’s ticket in the 810 bus traveling to Biarritz. He was attacked and severely injured consequently.

Prime Minister Castex confirmed Monguillot's death on Twitter late Friday. "The Republic recognizes him as an exemplary citizen and won't forget him. The law will punish the perpetrators of this despicable crime," he wrote, describing the attack as "cowardly."

Following the death of the victim, the Bayonne prosecutor, Jerome Bourrier, informed that he would ask for the charges to be changed to take into account his death.

A silent march was organized in his honour by his family on Wednesday starting from the bus stop where the incident took place. The local operator said that the colleagues, who refused to work, will resume work on Monday with a security agent aboard the bus.

The Interior Minister, Gerald Darmanin, shall visit Bayonne on Saturday to meet the drivers and discuss further on the security deployment strategies.

Also Read: To Hell With Lynching

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