Hamilton police have arrested a man after a video appeared to show him making transphobic, homophobic, and xenophobic slurs towards passengers on an HSR bus.
41-year-old Christopher Pretula is facing assault and utter threat charges. Police say they are also looking to lay a hate crime charge.
Hamilton Police have arrested Christopher Pretula (41) after a hate incident on a #HamOnt bus earlier this week. He has been charged with Assault Level 1 and Utter Threat. Read More: https://t.co/4EaYNvTzhV
— Hamilton Police (@HamiltonPolice) August 3, 2022
The incident, which was all caught on video, occurred August 1 in the area of Gage Park at the Lawrence Road entrance. Based on the point of view, it appears the video was recorded by Pretula.
Pretula regularly livestreams on YouTube and other social media platforms. He goes by the moniker Mr. Bum Tickler online.
Shortly after the incident, Pretula gloats about what transpired on the bus in a now-deleted YouTube video.
“For all my local Hamiltonians, if you can’t handle sh*t like that, then get off this channel,” Pretula said.
The video made its rounds on Reddit and Twitter earlier this week and police say the incident was reported by a third party in another province.
Pretula can be heard saying “I don’t know what this goofball, weird, transformer-looking fool is laughing at,” and telling another rider on the bus to “go back to Pakistan.”
He then accuses another rider of kicking him. “Do it again, motherf***er… I’ll kick your f***ing head off,” Pretula threatened.
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Members of the 2SLGBTQI+ community in Hamilton are concerned about the rise in hate crimes in the city.
In 2021, 108 hate incidents in Hamilton have been reported to police, up 35% from 2020.
“This stuff breaks my heart,” Twitter user Jyss said in a tweet. “Council and mayoral candidates, what are you going to do about the hate in our city?”
This stuff breaks my heart. Council and mayoral candidates, what are you going to do about the hate in our city?
— Jyss (@Jysster) August 3, 2022
Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger called the incident “reprehensible.”
If anyone witnessed this reprehensible incident or knows who this person is, please call Hamilton Hate Crime Investigator Sergeant Rebecca Moran at 905-546-5511.
— Fred Eisenberger (@HamiltonsMayor) August 3, 2022
Hamilton police are urging any additional victims or witnesses to contact Hamilton Police Hate Crime Investigator Sergeant Rebecca Moran at 905-546-5511.