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‘Delusional’ Woman Stabs Mother Protecting Her 3-Year-Old in Bus Attack

(Credit: Tulare County Sheriff’s Office)

TULARE COUNTY — A woman was stabbed trying to protect her daughter during a bus ride Monday after deputies say a woman with a knife threatened to kill the 3-year-old.

A Greyhound bus heading to Oakland stopped in Bakersfield to pick up 48-year-old Teresa Madrigal, according to the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office.

During the ride, the bus driver had to pull Madrigal off the bus, according to Nathan Wanhala, who helped during the attack. During a press conference, the sheriff’s office said the 48-year-old was talking to herself and acting “delusional.” The bus driver then allowed her back on.

Teresa Madrigal, 48

While on Highway 99, just outside of Visalia, Madrigal forced her way in between a mother and child sitting in front of her, who were heading to Sacramento to see family. That’s when she “got hysterical,” according to Wanhala. She cursed at the woman, threatening to kill her daughter.

Then the sheriff’s office says Madrigal grabbed the 3-year-old by the neck and held up a knife.

The mother of the child began to fight Madrigal and was stabbed in the stomach. The sheriff’s office said she continued to fight despite her wound.

Wanhala was sitting across from the women when he jumped in to help. He tried to grab the knife from Madrigal and was stabbed in the hand.

“I just wanted her to stop,” Wanhala told the press. “I just didn’t want her to hurt anybody.”

Wanhala said at one point Madrigal slipped away from him, which is when she started hurting herself and stabbed at her own throat in an attempt to kill herself. The knife was taken from her but Wanhala said there was already “so much blood.”

Passenger Spencer Williams’ sustained minor injuries as he joined Wanhala to try and subdue Madrigal. When the bus driver pulled over along the highway, he also held her back. Wanhala said Madrigal was still trying to go after other passengers on the bus as they tried to keep her pinned down.

During the mayhem, passengers helped the bleeding mother and someone consoled her daughter.

Deputies and CHP officers arrived at the side of the roadway and intervened.

Four people were hospitalized, including the mother and Madrigal. Both had to undergo surgery and the mother is stable.

Madrigal is still receiving treatment and is in the custody of the sheriff’s office. She has been charged with assault with a deadly weapon and child endangerment.

The 3-year-old is now in the care of her aunt in Sacramento.

During the conference, officials say Madrigal had on a medical wristband but they could not say anything further about her mental state. During the ordeal, Madrigal kept screaming that the Bakersfield Police Department had killed her child, according to Wanhala. That has not been confirmed.