Video shows brutal Brooklyn Heights knockout punch
Victim warns, ‘Keep your eyes open’
Longtime Brooklyn Heights resident Richard Carey was somewhat distracted, digging in his pocket for his door key as he walked home along Joralemon Street in Brooklyn Heights on July 6 around 11:15 p.m.
Carey, a digital designer and developer, had just returned from dinner out. It was a hot night and the subway was steamy, so he got off the train at the Clark Street stop to enjoy walking a couple of extra blocks outside.
As he turned onto Joralemon Street, he noticed a group of three men and one woman walking up the sidewalk from the direction of Brooklyn Bridge Park. They seemed harmless – not a tight group, no gang colors.
Suddenly, 10 feet from his front door, “It was like an old analog TV — all the lines went horizontal,” he told the Brooklyn Eagle.
Brutally punched by one of the men in the group, Carey flew upside down, his glasses broken, his legs resting against a tree in front of 99 Joralemon St.
“I was unable to see; the blood was streaming down my face,” he said.
A video released by police shows what Carey, distracted in his hunt for his keys, did not see: One of the men in the seemingly harmless group had taken a running leap and slammed him in the side of the head with full force, sending him flying over a short iron fence.
After the punch, the man and the other members of the group continued walking as if nothing had happened, barely looking at Carey as he lay dazed and injured on the ground.
“It was random, unprovoked and it hurt,” he said.
Carey spent the night in the emergency room at New York Methodist Medical Center, receiving treatment for two gashes around his eye and a concussion.
Now police have issued a description of the perps and are asking the public for help in finding them.
The man who struck Carey is described as an adult male black, 5-foot-10 inches tall, weighing 160 pounds, last seen wearing black sneakers and a white T-shirt. The two additional males and one female are described as black or Hispanic by the police.
Carey describes the group as two blacks and possibly two whites.
“What does that [race] prove?” he asked. “It proves that kids do stupid stuff.”
Incidents related to Brooklyn Bridge Park goers
While the 84th Precinct has experienced a reduction in many types of serious crimes (see: 84th Precinct is in top 10 in crime reduction in NYC), residents say violence on Joralemon Street and nearby blocks has escalated since large numbers of park goers have begun using the street as a thoroughfare to Brooklyn Bridge Park.
On Jan. 31, a prominent Orthodox rabbi was punched in a similar incident on Joralemon near Hicks Street. Last August, a gang of roughly 20 young adults terrorized a popular local deli. The gang also snatched money from the Halal food stand at Joralemon and Court streets. In April 2015, cops from the 84th Precinct arrested two men following gunfire at the park’s basketball courts.
Carey described the changes he has seen in the neighborhood since the park was built.
“I’m not a NIMBY [Not In My Backyard] person,” Carey said. “I thought the park was great. I’ve enjoyed the park a lot myself.”
“In the past five years, as traffic and the number of people increased, you get the good, the bad and the ugly,” he said. “Certainly it’s less peaceful; arguably it’s less safe. Prior to this you had groups marauding up Joralemon Street and behaving badly — jumping on cars, knocking on doors.
“I hate to say it, but there’s an escalation in the level of random violence. It’s not cool.” He added, “I feel it’s less safe. I don’t want to judge any teen as a possible threat.”
If anything, Carey feels for the innocent teens who will now be scooped up due to the extra security efforts the 84th Precinct is putting into place.
“The response is going to crank down the heat on the kids,” he said. Recently, “they busted some kids smoking a joint, where before they would have ignored it. I hate to see that.”
Carey had nothing but praise for cops from the 84th Precinct.
“I give them kudos,” he said. “They were at my door as soon as I called 911. They asked me to drive around with them.
“People just need to be aware,” he advised. “We think we live in the best neighborhood in the city, and we do. But it’s still New York City. Keep your eyes open.”
Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at www.nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.
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