Gun owner thwarts stabbing, boss boots hero

By Douglas Ernst

Didarul Sarder (Photo: WJBK FOX 2 Detroit)
Didarul Sarder (Photo: WJBK FOX 2 Detroit)

A Michigan gun owner stopped a woman from being stabbed to death on the job and suddenly found himself portrayed as the villain by his boss.

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Didarul Sarder arrived at his job at General Motors Technical Center in Warren on Wednesday when he witnessed a female co-worker being repeatedly stabbed. Sarder, who has a concealed pistol license, or CPL, drew his weapon and ordered the attacker to freeze.

“The lady kept saying ‘I’m dying, someone help’ and it was just natural reaction,” Sarder told WJBK Fox 2 on Wednesday. “I just see this lady getting stabbed. I only had like half a second to think and I unholstered my firearm and pointed it at her to drop the knife.”

Sarder, a valet supervisor, kept control of the situation until police arrived. Victim Stephanie Kerr is now in critical condition at a local hospital.

“Maybe those few seconds before the police arrived could be the difference between life and death,” he said.

WJBK reported that Warren police said the assailant, a 32-year-old woman, had come to see Kerr and that they argued in the building’s lobby, then went outside, where the woman pulled a knife, stabbing Kerr multiple times in the neck, back and abdomen. The woman was later identified as Kerr’s daughter.

Police and Warren’s mayor, Jim Fouts, said Sarder should be praised as a hero “for his quick action and quick thinking,” but the bosses at General Motors didn’t see it that way.

“He said, ‘You shouldn’t have had a firearm here. After this is done he needs to be escorted off the property. He’s not welcome back here.’ I was really bummed out,” Sarder told the Fox affiliate. “I got a little emotional. I would do it all over again if I could save this woman’s life over a job. I can get another job.”

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Sarder’s wife told the Detroit Free Press that her husband has worked for the valet service for 10 years.

The publicity from the event appeared to change minds at GM regarding Sarder’s firing.

“GM has not requested the valet be dismissed. To our knowledge the valet remains an employee of the vendor,” the company said in a statement released Wednesday.

GM has since reversed the the unpopular decision, allowing the valet-service supervisor to return to work.

“Had he not legally exercised his Second Amendment rights this woman would probably not be with us today,” the mayor said in a statement. “He is employed by a GM contracted valet service. Right after it happened someone in authority asked him off the premises because he violated company rules with a gun. That was absolutely the wrong response to this hero. However that decision was over-ruled by higher-ups and he now has his job back.

“Hero’s should be rewarded not terminated,” he added. “Didarul is a resident of Warren and a resident that we can all be proud of!”

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