A black man standing in Union Square said “I’m going to punch the first white man I see!” before knocking out an innocent 62-year-old man, according to police.
Jeffrey Babbitt of Brooklyn was sucker-punched in the face in Union Square about 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, leaving him in a coma. Doctors fear he might be brain dead, reported the New York Daily News.
Lashawn Marten, 31, was unprovoked when he knocked Babbitt to the ground. Police said the attack may have been a hate crime.
“He said ‘the next white person who walks by I’m going to [expletive],’” a female witness told CBS. “His fist went in and the man’s head bobbed and he hit the ground and you could hear his skull hitting the ground.”
“The prognosis is not good and it does appear that the victim will likely die,” Manhattan Assistant District Attorney John Temple said at Marten’s arraignment Thursday.
Marten also allegedly attacked two men who tried to help Babbitt.
“He stood there and hit two more people and asked for the police to come,” said witness Michael Benson.
Babbitt lives in Brooklyn where he cares for his elderly mother, who has Alzheimer’s.