Remember The Dude Who Fought Off Muggers On His Porch?

The first incident happened back in July, when he fought off muggers because he didn’t want to lose his camera, which had photos of his mother’s wedding. Well, I just got an email from him and he recounts his most recent experience here. Perhaps most disturbing was that a delivery driver dropped off a package right while the assault was taking place. He writes:

“Today at 3:30pm while walking back home from the 10th Street Market a group of teenagers assaulted me.

After I had purchased a soft drink from the 10th Street Market, I was walking north on 10th street on the eastern sidewalk when a teen ran down the sidewalk from Westminster street and literally started throwing punches at me on the sidewalk near the alley. He didn’t ask for money, rather just wanted to fight and I looked like an easy subject.

When I turned around another youth had approached me from behind and took a swing at me. Since I wasn’t taken down with any of the punches, I continued to hold my fists up and take on both of the youth. I was able force the main attacker of the teenagers up 10th street to the corner of Westminster Street, whereupon another teen came running north on the sidewalk and attempted to punch me again. I continued yelling at them at the top of my lungs asking them why they wanted to fight me and telling them that I live here in the neighborhood.

While I want them to be punished for their actions, I do not want the youth to go to jail because from my experience it only hurts their future prospects. Community service can be a strong reforming agent for wayward youth like the ones who find sport in an after school fight club.

What I found bothersome during the entire altercation was that I was yelling at the top of my lungs the entire time & no neighbors heard me and that a UPS driver made a delivery to a neighbor while it was taking place and neither parties did anything. But at the same time there is little that can be done by observers except yelling “I am calling the police,” unless they want to risk getting beat up as well.”

Read the rest of his account here.

Very troubling. Do you think community service would be a productive/suitable punishment for the assailants?

50 Comment

  • Unfortunately, if these thugs were ever caught, they likely would get neither jail time nor community service, rather simply would be released back to their families with no punishment. I’ve been mugged twice here by kids who couldn’t have been older than 15, and each time the police officer who took my report said (and I’m paraphrasing): “Even if we catch them, they’ll be out on the street by tomorrow. A juvenile has to pretty much kill someone to be punished in this city.”

  • Maybe oversimplfying here – but I think the fear of a gun keeps people from getting involved. We all like to think that we could ward off an attack that was physical in nature (that we could fight to the death for ourselves or for someone else), but we have no power once a weapon gets invloved. The unknowns in this situation make it hard for people to react. Just my two cents for what it is worth.

  • ship them off to the military or something.

    this guy has very bad luck it seems since these two attacks happened fairly close together.

  • Is it horrible that I kind of don’t believe this story?

  • Send them to jail or extended rehab… Kids that violent and evil will never learn right from wrong. Their parents have either taught them or tolerated hatred. Sad, but unfortunately true.

  • Community service is wonderful for non-violent offenders.

    But I’m sorry, these kids are sociopaths. Look at the circumstances of the attack: an unprovoked many-against-one beating on a street in broad daylight. Community service won’t deter them, nor will it rehabilitate them. They need some serious psychological intervention.

    If I become king of the world, each of these kids would get a year of solitary in a buddhist monastery. Once they learn to meditate and control themselves, maybe they’ll do better in civilized society.

  • “While I want them to be punished for their actions, I do not want the youth to go to jail because from my experience it only hurts their future prospects.”

    Good idea, don’t call the police and keep them on the streets. Except next time they decide to attack it might be your sister/mom visiting you or your significant other. Maybe this time, they land a couple of punches, pull out a knife and get seriously injured if not dead. These criminals usually escalate attacks.

    it’s time to leave the no snitchin policy behind.

  • A very similar thing happened to my old roommate when we lived up in Brightwood a couple of years ago. Four kids coming home from school jumped my roommate from the back, punched him in the back the head with some kind of hard object (the wounds could not have been caused by hands, more like brass knuckles or some other instrument) and before he even knew what was going on, he was on the ground trying to block their kicks, which broke a couple of his ribs. With all the strength he had left, he was able to run across the street and call the police from the convenience store.

    Luckily, one of the guys working at the convenience store had seen the whole thing and was able to finger the kids, who were just barely in high school.

    They were given a warning and let go. He ended up in the hospital for a few days, and had wounds for long after. For weeks, occasionally while he was outside walking down the street, idiots in cars would scream at and taunt him.

    He moved back to Detroit.

    Fuck these fucking fuckers. I don’t know what to do that would help, and I don’t particularly want to help them out at all, I kind of agree with CB: lock them up in a Buddhist monastery until they can control themselves.

  • Um, Ashley Todd much? Why doesn’t he just “carve” a T (for teenager) on his cheek? Then it won’tmatter if it’s backwards. I don’t know if his account is true or not but the description seems like a fake. And if it’s fake it seems sad that someone would make up how scary their neighborhood is.

  • J, if you’re terrible, I’m terrible. But in the event that we’re both wrong, this guy is the most patient person in the world. I don’t really care what would happen to a bunch of little hoods who attack me for no reason, and I don’t think he needs to, either.

  • First off, the story doesn’t sound quite right. might just be the florid language.
    secondly, since when does ANY juvenile get jail time for a mugging or attack. This is the part that’s truly unbelievable- I know juveniles arrested for DISTRIBUTION-LEVEL COCAINE POSSESSION who DC decided to DROP ALL CHARGES ON! They didn’t even get community service! It’s not believable that anyone who lives in DC would think that teenagers are prosecuted. This story simply cannot be true and I’m stunned by it.

  • honestly things like this make me sympathetic to the argument for allowing citizens to carry guns. a couple dead muggers would send a nice message.

  • “Ship them off to the military, jail, juvie, whathaveyou.”
    “Many can’t go there; and many would rather die.”
    “If they would rather die, they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.”

    This all seems like a wonderful recreation of a Petworth Christmas Carol.

  • I doubt he made this up, but I do read between the lines in both stories propensity to fight back that gets the guy into more trouble and pain than necessary.

    Dude: you’re no Hulk Hogan, when stuff blows up, RUN.

  • I dont know why so many think this story is bogus when the crime fits MO of oh about a HUNDRED attacks this year. Ill say this though. let these punks roll up on me. Im no Hulk either but from the description given I would easily be able to bash these bammas skulls in and would be happy to do so to anyone who attacked me unprovoked. liberal as I am. and I am very Liberal.

  • My advice to anyone this happens to. dont try and fight them all off at once. just grab one and punch them until they are out cold. the others will bolt and leave their fallen commrad on the ground to deal with the police and paramedics.

  • Pathetic that he doesn’t want them to face jail time. Pathetic that someone retrieving a UPS does not face charges for not helping.

    And if I’m UPS, I find that deliveryman and put him out of a job.

  • Maybe the kids just really really dislike Jason Schwartzmann?

    That dumb joke made, I do believe the guy. One of my neighbors was jumped on NH at the beginning of summer by two kids who snuck up from behind, beat him a little, and then left without even trying to take anything.

    The neighbor and his wife put their house on the market within a month or two of that and now live in B’more.

    Unsupervised kids without parental role-models can be assholes. Unfortunately, that’s part of the equation around here.

  • I’m as socially liberal as anyone, but when I hear about attacks like this, all I can think of is the hyper-violent kids in question should be taken away from their parents, and raised by the state in a Sparta-like regimen, to become super-soldiers to fight in our nation’s many wars. I feel a blog entry coming on…

  • I think the people calling this guy a liar are of the Hear No Evil See No Evil set and don’t want to believe that their neighborhood harbors this kind of element. The police themselves have said this type of crime is on the uptick around these parts so calling this account into question is a bit like calling me a liar if I told you I saw crackheads dealing on Georgia Ave. We may not want things like this happening in our neighborhood but they do and ignoring it wont make it go away. the only thing odd about this is that this has happened to him twice now. but if he is small and looks like an easy target…

  • I heard a similar story from a friend in Petworth. While jogging, he was approached by a bunch of teens, one of which told him he bet he could kick his ass. No robbery motive, just random-violence-as-entertainment (a la Clockwork Orange). He kept running.

  • its like in england where they have chavs that happy slap you.

  • I was jumped by 3 teens (11-15 yo) 2 years ago 1 block east of Grant Circle. They didn’t say anything nor did they try to steal anything and I wasn’t seriously hurt. The police said this is a very common occurrence in DC – kids just attacking people for fun. I believe a stint in juvenile hall and/or community service is needed. Repeat offenders go away for longer time and parents need to be fined. That will get some people’s attention and hopefully corrective action will be a result.

  • was there not a whole front page city paper article about this and rock throwing a year ago

  • Anonymous,
    Did the police tell you what kind of kids are doing this? For instance, is it kids here on tour? Kids from certain neighborhoods? Surely this does not happen all over DC. Why does it only happen in certain areas and only done to certain people, by certain people? That might help us solve the problem.

  • if 3 teens (11-15 yo) are running around jumping people, their parents should be the ones going to jail

  • Yeah, whether it’s a true story or not, it’s a typical enough occurrence in this neck of the woods that it doesn’t surprise me. I absolutely don’t understand the concern about these thugs’ future prospects. They are criminals and should be treated as such — let them rehabilitate in prison. There are about a half dozen other groups’ future prospects that I would place above theirs: their next victims’, the kids who play by the rules who now get more stigmatized and lumped in with these punks, etc.. That this city accepts a degree of lawlessness as coming with the territory is beyond shameful. In the suburbs outside the District, kids subject to “zero tolerance” policies at school suffer more consequences for having a knife in their car in the school parking lot than kids committing felonies here.

  • These types of attacks happen every day in Columbia Heights, Petworth, Adams Morgan, etc. The writer of the story didn’t chose to be attacked, but he chose to be a victim. The only thing that will get these kids to stop is the fear of real and immediate harm to their physical being. The courts will do nothing to punish these kids even if they’re caught. Their parents will do nothing. The police are legally prohibited from doing much of anything, so this just leaves ‘us’. Every single person in DC who isn’t out committing attacks like this. We’re all potential victims unless we fight back. Use your brain, learn to fight, hell… cavemen learned to use tools several million years ago, so you probably should too. If not, well, you’re choosing to be a victim.

  • Anonymous stated:
    “That this city accepts a degree of lawlessness as coming with the territory is beyond shameful.”
    I think this city has a contingent of people that refuses to accept responsibility. For instance, when the kids attack someone, they see it as a function of the kids not having anything to do. So they push for mroe rec centers. Or summer jobs in the summer.

    When the kids don’t do well in school, they respond with paying the kids.

    If I get more explicit about who these bad guys are, PoP deletes my comment. But rest assured that it is not all of DC but a small subset of people that tolerate this senseless violence. Your best bet is to identify who these people are, and move as far away from them as possible because this problem will not be solved in our lifetime….

  • hate to say it but yeah. pack some brass knuckles. this is the second time you have been beat. these kids will think twice only when one of their boys gets his brains bashed in by one of their would be victim and ends up on life support.

  • [email protected]:42 – please check out this article in response to your comment and question:
    “…is it kids here on tour? Kids from certain neighborhoods? Surely this does not happen all over DC. Why does it only happen in certain areas and only done to certain people, by certain people?”

  • Things will get real bad real fast if your assailants get a hold of those brass knuckles…

  • I grew up in a small town in Michigan, we couldn’t even skip school, much less have a knife in our car or commit a felony.

    The school hired retired old ladies that prowled the school grounds all day so that you couldn’t leave. And they were no joke. If you tried to leave without waving your pass in the air, they’d blow their special whistle code to alert the other ladies and CHASE AFTER YOU.

    Living here has blown my mind.

  • I don’t recommend endangering yourself, but it’s always a good idea to know how to fight back. A friend of mine has a jiu jitsu / mma school in DC that’s nearby. If you want to check it out, here’s the website.

    The first lesson is free, so feel free to drop in.

  • There was also a recent trend about six months ago with mugging girls especially on bikes. They would come up on them, grab their book bags and when they turned around they would punch them in the face.

  • I used to live in SW, at the Gangplank Marina and the child gangs were vicious. Many of us were attacked to varying degrees. They throw stones and big metal bolts at the residents, rob and do whatever they can. I was injured, called police who came but of course kids vanished. One day a brave man (father of three boys himself) grabbed and held one of the gang and had management call the police. When the police arrived, they let the kid go, didn’t even write him up. Then soon after, a group (maybe 15-20) parents of the kids swarmed the Gangplank parking lot and threatened our resident and the management until they were apologizing all over the place out of real fear. That’s the parents’ response. That was 3 years ago and so things have not improved.

  • I am interested in what the legal options are. Somebody mentioned fining the parents. Somebody mentioned getting the kids into locked-down schools like miltary academies. I wonder if these ideas align with what the experts say. Given that the group-attack approach seems similar across the country and even into Europe, there should be some successful programs D.C. can draw from, if its existing laws are ill-equipped to help the police deal with the issue. I am bothered by Parakeet’s post, but what it tells me is that we need to start now if we hope to make these attacks go away, and hopefully we will reduce the likelihood of even worse things for these punks in the future.

    I appreciate the fact that the victim seems to have not given up on his neighborhood. I would be hard pressed after two attacks to do the same.

  • This kids need to be caught and have their fists cut off. That’ll stop them from beating innocent people.

  • I think the people calling this guy a liar are of the Hear No Evil See No Evil set and don’t want to believe that their neighborhood harbors this kind of element.
    not one person doubting the veracity of this post is doubting that he was mugged by kid. I don’t believe anyone in DC believes the kids are going to be prosecuted because they aren’t- that statement was totally off the wall. I doubt that he fought back as described.

  • I doubt that he would lie about this attack. He was featured in the Washington Post last year. He definitely doesn’t seem like the type who’d make something like this up. Sucks to hear its the second time he’s been attacked in his neighborhood.
    Hold tight Nikolas! Take some martial arts classes!!

  • I agree with NAB’s sentiment.

    After seeing a body in the street last night covered by a blanket, I would think twice about engaging an attack.

  • Fuck those kids. You can’t show them any fear or they will eat you alive. I feel terrible about this guy’s bad luck, martial arts classes won’t do shit especially if you’ve 3, 4, maybe more of them on you.

    I hope they lock the bastards up. Things are getting out of control and I fear that things will only get worse before they get better.

  • This just happenned to my friend (East Capitol Hill/by stadium) walking back from the Metro Monday evening. High school-age, large group, beating and watching. This has evidently occurred several times recently in their neighborhood. Very unnerving.

  • I think this town needs an overhaul. Since I’ve been her all of two years I have been mugged and assaulted by vagrants of this town. I’m not sure what the hell is going on? It seriously is getting to the point where I rarely want to leave the house. I say throw their ass in jail…more extreme, maybe wipe DC from the map and rebuild. It seems everyday someone is the victim of these animals…and I live at 10th and M.

  • Residents of this city need more police intervention BEFORE such acts occur. People are always saying what should happen to perpetrators (kids or adults) after reading of another heinous act. The fact of the matter is that these violent psychos are rarely caught, so the point is moot. We need cops and perhaps other trusted officials to get in these people’s sht BEFORE they act. If they find inebriated and neglectful parents, they need to be forced to change their ways. If they find kids roaming the street in groups with no apparent positive purpose, they need to be FORCED to go home of take advantage of the programs that their victims are paying for. And this means a temporary suspension of the Constitution, so be it. It’s really that bad.

  • news flash

    this town’s full of crime and hate.


  • All the above policy remedies require an effective local government, which we don’t have, as well as addressing national failures (education, health care, etc), which I won’t mention further. In the short run, get a pistol, learn to use it, and kill these violent and aggressive animals when you need to. Move away from DC as soon as you can, unless you’re pretty rich or pretty poor you’re not a priority for the government. There’s no sense sacrificing your life for this dump, and greener pastures undoubtedly await.

  • Hmmm. I sense some racial undertones to some of these posts. Damn PoP, I never knew that so many closet racists flocked to your blog. Look, DC has been one of the most crime-ridden cities in this nation for quite some time now. It sounds as if many of you expected to plop your asses down in the middle of a neighborhood filled with black folks who’ve been the victims of racism for years and everything would just go swimmingly. Well, I got news for you…shit is gonna happen!!! What do you think would happen to a Black man or woman who moved to a poverty stricken white town? You know the answer.

    The bottom line is be aware of your surroundings, get involved in your community, and elect city governemnt officials who will actually try to fight crime. As far as defending yourself goes, I can see the logic in either fighting or fleeing. Personally, I’m a fighter and, fortunately, I’m still around to talk about it.

  • while these kids really just deserve a knee in the face and foot in the groin, NAB is totally on target. running is the best defense.

    Darkside – don’t be a jerk. throwing “you’re racist” out there is obnoxious and not constructive.

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