Visitors and residents in the Montrose area are being urged to watch out for a bat-wielding man who has left a victim badly injured.
The 46-year-old victim said he left a bar adjacent to Fairview shortly after two o’clock in the morning and was walking to his car when he was attacked by a man with a bat.
The assailant is described as a 25- to 28-year-old black male with a medium build and a height of about five feet, ten inches. He was wearing blue jeans and a tie-dyed shirt.
The attack, which occurred on Sunday night near the corner of Crocker St. and Fargo St., was witnessed by several people. The assailant is still at large.
“He didn’t say anything, he just put his bat in his hand and had this look in his eyes like, ‘I’m gonna kill you,’ ” said the victim, who wanted to remain anonymous. “He started swinging and I started running.”
The attack left the man with two broken arms, numerous bruises, and a head wound which required 14 staples to close.
The victim, who remains at home and is estimated to take six weeks to two months to recover, said he knows of at least one other similar attack which occurred in the same area about a month ago.
“He’s out there at night waiting for someone to come walking down the street after the bar closes,” he said, “and he’ll jump out and hit them.”
Jodi Silva, a Houston Police Department spokesperson, said the department has not classified the attack as a hate crime, but is keeping the case open, pending further leads. The James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Act, signed in 2001, increases the punishment for crimes motivated by a person’s “sexual preference, race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, or disability.”
Silva was not aware of the other claimed attack.
Silva said aggravated assaults in the Central District, which includes the Montrose area, rose 15.6 percent overall to 104 cases, from 90 cases last year.
This victim encourages people in the area to be aware of their environment, to walk with other people, and to avoid areas where a crime could more easily be committed, such as areas in shadow and empty streets.
He is curious how no one has reported suspicious activity yet, or why the police haven’t caught his attacker.
“He has a bat,” he said. “I know you can’t hide a bat too well under your clothing; no one is wearing a long coat in this heat. To me I’d be suspicious if I saw someone walking around with a bat.”
Anyone with information about the attack, especially witnesses, are urged to call CrimeStoppers at 713/222-TIPS (8477).