Bizarre attack in Midtown caught on video

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A man lashed out at people who confronted his female companion over blocking traffic in Midtown, swiping a disabled man's cane, assaulting a woman and threatening a gay man who recorded what happened.

The incident unfolded on Saturday in the heart of the gayborhood as a Jaguar stopped on Piedmont Avenue just south of 10th Street, blocking access to the parking lot of several businesses, including gay-owned Helmet and gay-fave Pet Set. When Darren Kohn confronted the car's female driver about moving, a man stepped out of the car and attacked him and another woman who tried to help, according to a witness and an incident report from Atlanta police.

The man grabbed the wooden cane of Kohn, whose right leg was in a cast, and struck him with it. The assailant also hit Ummi Gunturk as she attempted to help Kohn. Both Kohn and Gunturk suffered visible injuries, according to the incident report.

When Julio Rocha, a gay stylist at Helmet, came out to help and record the incident, the assailant turned on him, too.

“I began recording as a deterrent and was yelling at the man and letting him repeatedly know that I was recording this event in hopes that he would use common sense and stop the assault. Instead he continued his assault before fleeing the scene,” Rocha told Project Q Atlanta.

The man also threatened Rocha, who later posted the video to YouTube. (Watch below)

“He said, 'Shut up cracker before I beat your ass. You pussy ass,” Rocha said.

The incident started when the driver of the car parked on Piedmont before heading into the Pet Set.

“The girl with the guy who beat the two people was at the Pet Set getting her dog and they refused to find a legal parking spot and just illegally stopped on Piedmont Avenue blocking in all of the people who were legally parked and refused to move his car so that they could leave,” Rocha said.

The video shows Kohn reaching into the car and removing the keys as the driver, clutching her dog, tries to grab them from him. The man circles with Kohn's cane in his left hand before grabbing Kohn and striking him. Kohn drops the keys, so the woman picks them and the pair return to the car before driving away. Before they flee, you can hear the man threaten Rocha.

Rocha's video clearly shows the car's license plate.

Atlanta police arrived and are investigating the incident but no arrests have been made. Rocha said he expected quicker action by police in the case.

“I am outraged that I recorded a violent assault in broad day light in Midtown and gave both the license plate number and a copy of the video to the police that very clearly shows the assault and five days later, still nothing has been done,” he said.



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