St. Pete man pulled knife on Black woman in racially motivated assault, police say

Pinellas County

CLEARWATER, Fla. (WFLA) — A St. Petersburg man was arrested Thursday after he allegedly pulled a knife on a black woman because of her race, according to an affidavit.

Clearwater police said that the assault happened at around 5:51 p.m. Thursday on a Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority bus.

The affidavit said Thomas Edward Kollar, 67, allegedly pulled out a black knife and walked toward the victim, pointing the blade at her and saying “hurtful words.”

Police said the woman told them she feared for her life and began to pray.

When officers spoke to Kollar, he told them he pulled the knife on the woman because she was Black and that Black people are going to take over St. Petersburg, the affidavit said.

Kollar also said officers couldn’t take his knife because he had to protect himself. After being read his rights, he then invoked his right to silence and asked for a lawyer.

A second affidavit said that after the suspect was taken into custody, police found a loaded syringe in his sweatshirt pocket. The suspect “spontaneously” told police that the syringe didn’t have heroin, but it had meth for his pain, police said.

According to his jail record, he faces charges for aggravated assault, possession of methamphetamine, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

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