The man,Tang Yongming, then committed suicide by throwing himself from the second story of the site, the 13th century Drum Tower just five miles from the main Olympics site. Shopkeepers and others in the area who might have witnessed the attack declined comment
The brutal attack shortly after midday was all the more shocking because of the rarity of violent crime against foreigners in tightly controlled China, which has ramped up security measures even more for the Olympics. The victims were Todd and Barbara Bachman of Lakeville, Minn. (see photo), parents of former Olympian Elisabeth Bachman, who is married to men's volleyball coach Hugh McCutcheon, according to the U.S. Olympic Committee. Bachman's father was killed he (Todd) is chief executive officer of Bachman's Inc a home-and-garden center based in Minneapolis.
The women's Volleyball team was told of the attack around 5 p.m. Saturday at a team meeting, just five hours before its opening game against Japan. Many of the players who knew Bachman from previous national teams broke into tears. "They were the sweetest family ever," the delegation member said. "They are a really Christian family. There's not one person who has ever met them who has a negative thing to say about them. They're a great family." "They follow USA volleyball," the person with the team said. "They would leave little messages for the players. The whole reason they were here is because their life is USA volleyball." Barbara Bachman was admitted to the intensive care unit at Peking Union Medical College Hospital, a doctor there said. Her injuries are serious and life-threatening, according to a U.S. Olympic Committee news release.
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The stabbing came only hours after what by many accounts was the most spectacular opening ceremony in Olympic history and it has already dampened some of the enthusiasm. ''They are deeply saddened and shocked,'' Darryl Seibel, a spokesman for the U.S. Olympic Committee, said of the volleyball team.
The U.S. Olympic Committee said in a statement that two family members of a coach for the men's indoor volleyball team were stabbed at the Drum Tower ''during an attack by what local law enforcement authorities have indicated was a lone assailant.'' Citing the Beijing Municipal Government Information Office, Xinhua said Tang Yongming, 47, killed the American man and injured both the American woman and the female guide.
The official Xinhua News Agency identified the attacker as Tang Yongming, 47, from the eastern city of Hangzhou. It said Tang attacked the two Americans and their Chinese tour guide, who was also injured, at 12:20 p.m. on the second level of the ancient tower, then leapt to his death immediately afterward. The second level of the tower is about 130 feet high. The Drum Tower, a major tourist site in central Beijing, has been sealed off and uniformed police are standing guard.
INTERPOL INVESTIGATING; "Although Tang Yongming committed suicide following this brutal murder, INTERPOL’s ongoing interest is of course to determine whether there is any link between Tang Yongming’s murder of a US citizen and terrorist activity or other organized criminal activity targeting citizens of any of the 204 countries participating in the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics," stated INTERPOL Secretary General Ronald K. Noble. With regard to providing additional support to Chinese law enforcement authorities, INTERPOL has offered to conduct an urgent comparison of Tang Yongming’s fingerprints and DNA profile against INTERPOL’s other databases of known terrorists.
Interpol fears terror attack on Beijing Olympics; Violence and terrorism at the Beijing games is a "real possibility", Interpol has warned, after protests surrounding the Olympic torch relay. "An attempted act of terrorism is a real possibility and a real concern," Ronald Noble, the secretary general of the international police network, told a security conference in Beijing.
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