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Man Beaten By Mob, In Critical Condition
Matthew Owens lying in the ICU at USA Medical Center.
By: | WKRG
Published: April 23, 2012
Published: April 23, 2012
MOBILE, Alabama --
Mobile police need your help to catch a mob that beat Matthew Owens so badly that he's in critical condition.
According to police, Owens fussed at some kids playing basketball in the middle of Delmar Drive about 8:30 Saturday night. They say the kids left and a group of adults returned, armed with everything but the kitchen sink.
Police tell News 5 the suspects used chairs, pipes and paint cans to beat Owens.
Owens' sister, Ashley Parker, saw the attack. "It was the scariest thing I have ever witnessed." Parker says 20 people, all African American, attacked her brother on the front porch of his home, using "brass buckles, paint cans and anything they could get their hands on."
Police will only say "multiple people" are involved.
What Parker says happened next could make the fallout from the brutal beating even worse. As the attackers walked away, leaving Owen bleeding on the ground, Parker says one of them said "Now thats justice for Trayvon." Trayvon Martin is the unarmed teenager police say was shot and killed February 26 by neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman in Samford, Florida.
Police canvassed the area, but did not find any suspects. They're asking anyone with information to call them at 251-208-7211, Crime Stoppers at 251-208-7000, or text a tip to 274637 and include the keyword CRIME 411.
Trayvon Martin cited in case of black on white beating
According to reports, two Chicago teens robbed a man at "branch-point" Tuesday, then punched him a number of times. When questioned by the police later, the two said the attack was motivated by their feelings over the Trayvon Martin case.
Alton L. Hayes, III was one of the perpetrators. The 18-year-old and a friend, 15, are both African-American. According to reports, they walked up behind their alleged victim. The younger one held the man's arms at his side while Hayes threatened him with a large branch saying, "Empty your pockets, white boy."
They searched the 19-year-old man's pockets before throwing him to the ground and hitting him in the head and the back. Hayes and his underage partner ran from the scene but were soon found by the police, arrested at gunpoint and charged with attempted robbery, aggravated battery and a perpetuating a hate crime. Cook County State's Attorney's office spokeswoman Tandra Simonton said that, when questioned by the police, Hayes said the attack was racially motivated.
Conservative blogger Robert Averach wrote of the event, "The mainstream media are not terribly interested in this story. That's because their outrage is only a tactic in the liberal war against Conservatives. Liberals are not really upset about Trayvon Martin's death. They only view Martin as a prop in their kabuki theater."
‘Trayvon' shouted as group attacks Good Samaritan
The name of Trayvon Martin was invoked again Wednesday night in Gainesville during an attack by a group that police say stomped on a white man who was scuffling with a black robbery suspect on the Bo Diddley Community Plaza.
The robbery suspect, Carl Milton Babb, 50, had been released from prison earlier in the day after serving more than two years in prison for the same crime he is accused of committing Wednesday — snatching a purse from a woman near the downtown plaza.
According to a Gainesville Police Department arrest report, Babb approached a woman eating dinner at the Lunchbox on the plaza at about 8:50 p.m. and asked her for a light.
When she said she didn't have one, Babb took off with her purse, which contained her $500 cellphone, according to the report.
The woman's dinner companion and another person took off after Babb.
When her friend caught up with Babb, according to the police report, Babb punched him in the face and grabbed his hair, but he was able to keep Babb pinned down, according to the report.
The scene attracted a crowd, and a number of people on the plaza approached Babb and the Good Samaritan, who tried to explain that Babb had just stolen his friend's purse.
GPD spokeswoman Cpl. Angelina Valuri said some members of the crowd shouted "Trayvon!" and that at least three of members of the crowd began stomping on the hands of the woman's friend to force him to let go of Babb.
Babb, who was listed as homeless, was arrested by police a few blocks away.
Valuri said some witnesses to the robbery tried to calm down the crowd, affirming the victim's story that he was trying to stop a man accused of a crime and retrieve his friend's purse.
"The crowd was acting off of emotion without knowing all of the facts of this case," Valuri said, adding that investigators didn't immediately know the names or races of the men or women who stomped on the victim.
It was the second attack in the past week in Gainesville in which assailants yelled the first name of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed black 17-year-old who was shot and killed by crime-watch volunteer George Zimmerman as the teen walked back to his father's girlfriend's apartment in Sanford on Feb. 26.
State Attorney Angela Corey had announced at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Jacksonville, less than three hours before the incident on Gainesville's downtown plaza, that Zimmerman had been charged with second-degree murder in Martin's death.
In Gainesville early Saturday, a 27-year-old white man was beaten by a group of between five and eight black men as he walked home on Southwest 23rd Terrace, police said.
The victim told police the attackers shouted "Trayvon!" before beating him, though he was intoxicated and could not give a description of the attackers or their vehicle.
Valuri said Thursday that investigators had no leads in the case and still were depending on members of the public to come forward with information.
"Emotions with (the Trayvon Martin) case, even though it didn't occur in our community, emotions are running high across the nation, including the city of Gainesville," Valuri said, referring to how the Martin case reared its head in Gainesville on Wednesday. "It's very unfortunate that, with this particular case, a person who was just trying to do the right thing ended up getting hurt."
According to the GPD report, Babb told Officer Jon Rappa he was "high on crack and doesn't remember what happened."
He also said he had been released from prison earlier in the day.
The officer checked with the Florida Department of Corrections, and it was true.
Babb was released Wednesday from Holmes Correctional Institution in Bonifay after serving two years and two months after he was convicted of felony battery and petit theft for a purse snatching.
The site of those crimes? The Bo Diddley Community Plaza.
On Wednesday night, Babb was charged with robbery, a third-degree felony, and battery, a first-degree misdemeanor, in connection with the latest purse snatching.
According to the DOC's offender database, Babb spent much of the 1980s and early 1990s in prison for burglary and theft and was imprisoned from May 2, 2005, to March 31, 2009, for burglaries and thefts that occurred in late 2004.
Less than a year later, on Feb. 1, 2010, his latest sentence began.