By Jayne Miller
BALTIMORE - The Labor Day weekend in Baltimore's Reservoir Hill ended with the beating of a 52-year-old man on the street in full daylight. The man -- who the 11 News I-Team has learned is a registered sex offender -- later died.
- Why does the news media also make it a point to point out someone who was murdered is a sex offender? Are they doing it to attempt to justify / condone the murder, or to show that the sex offender registry is nothing more than an online hit-list?
A witness said an orange traffic cone was used as a weapon. The attackers seemed to be carrying out instant street justice with the target claiming he'd done nothing wrong, I-Team lead investigative reporter Jayne Miller said..
Police responded quickly to the scene around 7:30 p.m. Monday in the 800 block of Lennox Street. Witnesses said they watched a group of people who were 16-24 years old chase down the man as he walked down the street.
Another witness, who chose not to give his name, had just returned to the neighborhood from a Labor Day cookout. He said the man was being accused of something by his attackers.
"A couple of guys was (sic) walking beside him, and they were asking him questions. I couldn't hear what they were asking him at first, and he was saying, 'I didn't do it, I didn't do it.' And the guy said, 'Yeah you did,'" the witness told 11 News.
Police confirmed the identity of the slain man as [name withheld]. The witness told 11 News that [name withheld]'s attackers were accusing him of assaulting a woman in the neighborhood.
"He was saying, 'You got the wrong person. I didn't do it.' So then the guys was (sic) walking beside him, and they started swinging on the guy, and I kind of politely, as a Christian person, said, 'You all leave him alone,' because he looked like he was a little intoxicated. So the guy hollered, 'No, we're not going to do that,'" the witness said.
- A Christian person, in our opinion, would've stepped in to help the man.
As many as 10 people were involved, Miller reported. The incident is an active homicide investigation that police said was captured on one of the city's crime cameras.
Police said they tried to resuscitate [name withheld] when they arrived at the scene. He died at a hospital.
[name withheld] just got out of jail a few days ago after pleading guilty to second-degree assault, Miller reported. The case that put him on the sex offender registry dates to 2003.