NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A 68-year-old man was knocked unconscious in what police believe was a random, unprovoked attack Friday afternoon.
As CBS2’s Jessica Borg reported, a Good Samaritan came to his aid, while he lay beaten and bleeding on the sidewalk.
The victim was attacked while walking along Lexington Avenue near 117th Street in East Harlem.
“I feel bad, because he’s an older guy,” one witness said.
Witnesses say the suspect came over and kicked the victim in his neck and chest.
“He snuffed him and then just ran off,” said another man.
The 68-year-old man was left hemorrhaging on the sidewalk.
“The gentleman was bleeding, pouring out of his ear,” the man said.
“He just fell back, but hard. You could actually hear the thump,” said Harlem resident Walter Velasquez.
Velasquez was walking in the area around 3 p.m. when he witnessed the attack. He says no words were exchanged between the victim and the suspect before the beating.
The Army veteran called 911 and stepped in to help.
“I took off my sweater and just put pressure for the bleeding to stop,” he told Borg.
The victim regained consciousness.
“I was happy that the guy made it. It’s Christmas time, it’s the holiday season,” said Harlem resident Mario Desena.
He called Velasquez a hero.
“Harlem’s got good people,” Desena added.
“If it wasn’t for him, I think he would’ve died,” another man said.
“I just did what any soldier would do,” said Velasquez. “What can I say?”
The 68-year-old was taken to Mount Sinai St. Luke’s in serious condition.
Police were still searching for the suspect late Friday night. He was last seen running south on Lexington Avenue.