‘He Was Going to Kill Everybody’: One Stabbed Before Witness Stops Knife Attack at Burbank Burger King

A witness intervened and held down the screaming attacker at the restaurant on Victory Boulevard

A man in his 70s was stabbed late Tuesday morning in an apparently unprovoked attack at a Burger King in Burbank that was thwarted by a witness.

The attacker later died at a hospital, police said late Tuesday. He was identified as James Rey Richard Kagaoan, a 36-year-old man whose last available address was Sun Valley.

The victim suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Paul Liotopoulis and James Kevios said they were passing time as they usually do at the restaurant in the 500 block of Victory Boulevard when Kagaoan, armed with a knife, approached their table and began stabbing a friend. 

"All of the sudden, a man starts stabbing my friend," said Liotopoulis. "He was yelling, screaming.

"I was just minding my own business. I can't believe it."

Kezios said he initially thought the man, about 30 years old, was striking his friend with his fists. He then realized he was armed with a knife, repeatedly stabbing him in the head and side.

Liotopoulis said he held up a chair to defend himself as a stranger jumped in to help. That man held the assailant down and took the knife, witnesses said.

"He was strong enough to hold the guy down," said Kezios. "Thank God for him. Otherwise, he was going to kill everybody.

"We come here just to kill the time every day. This guy, I don't know what the hell happened to him today. It was nuts. He made no sense."

Authorities did not immediately determine a motive for the attack.

Burger King issued a statement Tuesday afternoon: "While we're still looking into the specifics of this matter, we're saddened to hear about this incident. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the individuals affected by this incident. The safety of our Guests is of utmost importance to us and the Franchisee, who independently owns and operates this Restaurant. The Franchisee is fully cooperating with local authorities as they conduct their investigation."

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