SPD arrest two teen girls for assault of 61-year-old man caught on viral video
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Syracuse Police say they've arrested two teenage girls for attacking a 61-year-old man earlier this week.
Police say it happened on the 200 block of Glenwood Avenue at about 2:53 p.m. Wednesday. During the incident two teens, ages 14 and 15, allegedly assaulted a 61-year-old man. The victim told police a group of juveniles had been sitting on his front yard, and when he politely asked them to not sit on his property he was attacked. Police say the victim was punched twice in the head and face area by the two teen girls, who have not been identified due to their age. The girls were arrested Thursday after being located by Syracuse S.I.R.P. Detectives, who work in the Syracuse High Schools.
Video of the incident, recorded with a cell phone by a bystander, has gone viral on social media platforms including Facebook, with over 900,000 views already.
*Warning* The Facebook video below contains language and images some viewers may not find appropriate. Viewer discretion is advised.
The video appears to show an altercation between a man and a group of teenagers. After a few moments of shouting, a teen appears to approach the man and hit him in the face. The man then chases after the teen into the street when another teenager grabs him and spins him around. The man continues to chase after the suspects before stumbling to the ground in the middle of the road. Bystanders can be heard laughing while all of this happens.
The video ends after the man gets back up and continues to run towards the group of teens.
Police say the two teens are facing charges of third-degree assault. They were released to their parent guardians on appearance tickets.
We spoke to the man in the video Thursday afternoon. He's currently nursing a bruised eye. He didn't want to discuss what led to the altercation due to the ongoing investigation, but said the video had reached relatives of his as far away as Ireland via social media. We also spoke to a mother of one of the girls in the video. She says what her daughter did was uncalled for, and says she apologizes to the man in the video. She tells us her daughter is accepting responsibility for the incident and will face whatever consequences come with it.
Syracuse Police say a statement of prosecution is being taken from the victim of the attack and that each of the suspects involved in the incident are juveniles. Officials say they believe there will be juvenile arrests made as a result of the incident as soon as today.
Gary Willis lives just a few doors down from where the incident happened, and says he went outside when he heard the commotion. Having seen the incident with his own eyes, Willis tells us he is disappointed to see it happen in his own neighborhood.
"There should be a closer level of respect from both sides," Willis said.