A 75-year-old Army veteran fought off a knife-wielding man who allegedly planned to kill children at a Morton, Illinois, library.
“I’m going to kill some people!” Dustin Brown, 19, yelled when he entered the Morton Public Library with two knives on Oct. 13, veteran James Vernon told the Pekin Times.
Vernon said the knives Brown had were “hunting types” with “fixed blades about 5 inches” long. Authorities said they were wrapped in tape for a more secure grip.
Vernon was teaching a chess class to 16 children, ages 7 to 13, when Brown entered the library. He had the children go under tables and he stood to face Brown.
“I tried to talk to him,” Vernon said. “I tried to settle him down. I didn’t, but I did deflect his attention [from the children] and calmed him a bit. I asked him if he was from Morton, did he go to high school. I asked what his problem was. He said his life sucks. That’s a quote.”
Vernon moved closer to Brown as they spoke and positioned himself between him and the room’s door, with the children behind him under the tables.