Complete stranger stabs a dad holding young daughter in the neck during random, mysterious attack inside a restaurant: Police

A transient California man is behind bars after he reportedly stabbed a man in the neck inside a California restaurant on Wednesday. A day later, the victim died.

CBS reports that the incident happened at the Aloha Steakhouse off of California St. in Ventura. According to responding Ventura officers,  35-year-old Anthony Mele was dining inside the restaurant with his wife and 5-year-old daughter when a stranger randomly targeted him, approached him and stabbed him the neck. The victim fled the scene shortly after at around 9:20 p.m.

Mele was holding his young daughter in his lap when the suspect attacked him, but the child wasn’t physically hurt during the ordeal.

Waiters and witnesses chased down the suspect, later identified as Jamal Jackson, 49, and trapped him off of Ventura Promenade, where they held him until police arrived. The motive remains unclear as the suspect and the victim apparently didn’t know each other, but witnesses told authorities that prior to the stabbing, Jackson was inside the restaurant waving a knife around.

“Who would have thought that someone there with his wife and child just having dinner, completely unaware of anything going on,” Shannon Rice, a frequent customer at the restaurant said. “My thoughts are with him and his wife and child.”

Our family, friends, and community have been shocked by this random act of violence that took Anthony’s life far too…

Posted by Morgan Gutierrez on Thursday, April 19, 2018


After undergoing emergency surgery, Mele passed away on Thursday afternoon. Police booked Jackson in the Ventura County jail on a felony murder charge. His bail was set at $1.5 million.

The story is still developing. Check back with CrimeOnline as additional details become available.

[Feature Photo: Anthony Mele/GoFundMe;Jamal Jackson/Police Handout]