The national media have paid little attention to these knockout videos showing people – usually teenagers – sucker punching and knocking out unsuspecting pedestrians. In fact, in one of the few times they did take notice of it, the knockout attack was committed by a white man on an unsuspecting black man. That particular case was actually investigated by the Department of Justice as a hate crime.
For this reason, many people speculate that the national media will only take notice if the attacker is white, and the victim is black. If the attacker is black, the incident will most likely remain a local story.
In this particular case, a New Jersey teen is seen in a video walking up next to an older man waiting to cross an intersection. The teen briefly exchanges words with him, and cries can be heard from the person holding the camera to “Knock him out! Knock him out!” The teen then sucker punches the older man who falls to the ground unconscious.
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The incident apparently took place December 7th of last year. The video was posted to Facebook and Twitter, and it went viral. Many condemned the attack and alerted the police to investigate the matter.
According to Paterson Police Department Director Jerry Speziale, the two teens directly involved with the knockout attack have been identified and charged. One turned himself in, and the other is still at large. The Paterson Times reported:
Two city teens have been charged with assaulting an unsuspecting elderly man as he attempted to cross an intersection, the video of which went viral on social media sparking widespread condemnation and a police investigation.
Police have identified and charged a 16-year-old and a 17-year-old with aggravated assault and endangering an injured victim for the vicious unprovoked attack on the victim as he attempted to cross the intersection of Rosa Parks Boulevard and Van Houten Street, according to police.
Police director Jerry Speziale said the assailant shown in the video sucker punching the defenseless old man is the 17-year-old while the voice egging him on from outside of the camera vantage point is the 16-year-old.
Speziale said the 16-year-old filmed the assault which went viral on Thursday forcing a police response. He said the boy surrendered to police at 5 p.m. on Saturday.
It’s not clear if the victim in this knockout attack is white. Even if he were, the incident is not likely to even be mentioned by national media networks, let alone make its way to the federal Department of Justice as a hate crime case to be investigated. Unfortunately, the only way for an incident like this to be taken seriously at the national level is if the attacker were white, and the victim were black.
In reality, the color of a person’s skin should be irrelevant in these assault and battery cases. And it doesn’t matter whether or not the attack happened out of racial bigotry. The bottom line is that a violent crime was committed by an individual against an innocent person, and there should always be legal consequences, regardless of whether or not the circumstances are consistent with the media narrative.