A mystery hero has reluctantly come forward after he was filmed using a cafe chair to distract the man accused of a stabbing rampage in Sydney’s CBD.
Lawyer John Bamford broke his silence on Thursday, answering speculation about the identity of the “chair man” who was shown approaching 20-year-old Mert Ney before his arrest on Tuesday.
Mr Bamford told Seven’s Sunrise he was trying to get ahead of “what was going to eventuate” with people hounding him.
Mr Ney is accused of killing 24-year-old Michaela Dunn in a Clarence Street apartment before allegedly stabbing 41-year old Linda Bo at the Hotel CBD.
Mr Bamford said he was getting lunch when he saw a man emerge from the side of a building “and I think he had the knife raised”.
“I just grabbed the chair and, you know, went after him basically as best I could,” he said.
“I had to get rid of my papers that I had taken for lunch to read. So I had to drop them at my cafe, but the guy knows me there so I didn’t worry about that.
“We had a little brief encounter when he jumped off the top of the roof of a car and he went over to the other side … I forget what I said but I remember what he said, he said he had a bomb in his bag.
“He had a blue bag around his hips. The zip was undone and it didn’t look like there was a bomb in there to me. He was just having me on.”
Mr Bamford said he had no option but to act.
“What am I gonna do? Go home and say I was there and I could’ve done something and backed away from it?”
“I mean, there was just no option. He was there, I had a chance to get him so I was gonna do something about it. What do you do?
He thought the reaction to his bravery was “a bit overegged” and that being described as a “viral sensation” sounds “like the flu”.
“What am I gonna do, go home and say I was there and I could have done something and backed away from it? I mean there was just, there was no option,” Mr Bamford said.
“We live in a very peaceful, harmonious community, by and large,” he said.
“So when you see something like this arrive on your doorstep, out of nowhere, you’ve got no choice. You gotta go and do something about it, that’s just the way it is.”
NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller has described the men who helped detain Mr Ney as “the highest order of heroes”.
“They saved lives,” he said.