THE BRONX (PIX11) — Police are looking for three men that savagely beat a homeless man while he was sleeping on the steps of a church in the Bronx, leaving him with brain injuries.
The NYPD released surveillance footage showing the man laying on the steps of St. Nicholas Tolentine Church on University Avenue at about 10 p.m. June 19.
Three men then come into view and surround the man. Two of them begin kicking and stomping the man’s head. The trio starts to leave, but one of the men turns around and begins attacking the man again before nonchalantly walking away.
The victim was taken to St. Barnabas hospital, where is remains unconscious.
This was a brutal crime against a defenseless homeless person sleeping in a place that’s supposed to be a sanctuary from this kind of violence.
There’s also an ongoing police search to bring the suspects into custody.
Father Joseph says there’s typically one, and as many as five or six homeless people sleeping on the church’s front steps on any given night.
“I believe they sleep there precisely because it’s up high, and there’s a certain protection there, the lights are, on, and the fact that the man was assaulted, kicked in the head like that, in front of the church door, where it’s supposed to be a place of peace, at the very least, it’s disconcerting,” said Father Girone.
When PIX11 first began talking to a woman named Carmen in front of the church, she told us she was upset at the sight of homeless people sleeping at the church, and added she thought it was getting “out of hand.”
But Carmen changed her tune after we showed her video of the assault.
“Ok, I don’t want to see any more. That’s bad. That’s really bad,” Carmen uttered as she turned away from the screen.
“He wasn’t doing anything. He was just sleeping there!” added Carmen.
Anyone with information of the attack is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.