An innocent Philadelphia man whose only crime was to offer shelter to two teenagers who were being chased by a mob was beaten inside his own home for his troubles, in what police are calling a racially-motivated incident.
According to the Philadelphia Daily News, on September 9 a black teenager either got pushed off his bike or fell off, and two white teens laughed at him. The group comprised of blacks and Latinos then armed themselves with pipes and bats to seek retaliation on the teens.
They ran off and later spotted Mark LaVelle on the street, begging for help. LaVelle, who said the teens looked to be about 13 or 14, sent them into his house.
"'We got you, you white motherf****r!'" LaVelle said he heard one of the dozens of people yell.
With the teens and his family safely inside, LaVelle said he went outside to calm the angry mob. When someone shouted "Something's going to happen now!" LaVelle got nervous and went inside.
But a few of them kicked his door down and entered the house.
"The first guy hits me with a pipe. The second guy knocks me in the face. All I'm hearing is my wife and kids screaming," said LaVelle.
LaVelle said he stopped another person, this one armed with a gun, from getting into the house. At that point, police sirens could be heard, and the mob ran off.
LaVelle was able to identify the two people who attacked him as well as the man with the gun. They were all arrested.
The next day though, the mother of one of the suspects arrived at LaVelle's house. He said she screamed, "'You white motherf****r, you got my kid locked up! You got my son locked up because he's black, you're white!'"
She claimed that her son was only a witness not an attacker. When LaVelle said the truth would come out in court, he said she responded, "'If you make it to court! I know where you live!'"
It's unclear if the woman was arrested for making threats.