WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- Vince Li, the man who beheaded and cannibalized a fellow passenger on a Greyhound bus in Canada, has won the right to be allowed to leave the grounds of the mental hospital where he is being kept, a criminal review board ruled Thursday.
Li was found not criminally responsible for the July 2008 death of Tim McLean, a young carnival worker who was sitting next to Li on a bus near Portage la Prairie.
The review board said the passes will start at 30 minutes and increase incrementally to a maximum of full days.
But the passes should only be granted if Li's treatment team believes his condition is stable and that it would be "appropriate and safe for him to leave the locked ward."
Witnesses said Li attacked McLean as their bus traveled at night along a desolate stretch of the Trans-Canada Highway.
McLean had his eyes closed and was listening to music on his headphones when Li, a stranger who was sitting beside him, suddenly stood up and started stabbing him.
As the bus stopped and horrified passengers fled, Li carved up McLean's body and ate portions of it.
Finding himself locked inside the bus, Li finally escaped through a window and was arrested.
Li then apologized and pleaded with police to kill him.
Police said McLean's body parts were found throughout the bus in plastic bags, and the victim's ear, nose and tongue were found in Li's pocket.