14 December 2013

Knockout: A Game that Kills

Knockout Perpetrators
If you are in Syracuse, St. Louis and New Jersey right now, try to be careful when walking near teenagers. There seems to be a new game among adolescents nowadays that have already caused deaths in those areas. The target is usually unsuspecting people walking the streets.

According to Anthony Sodd in his article in 'The Capital', "the rules to the Knockout Game are simple. Basically you pick a victim at random and see if you can knock them to the ground in just one punch. Often the victims of the Knockout Game are unwittingly attacked without warning or from behind, and 'players' are often successful at knocking them to the ground."

A report from Robert De Guzman of Kicker Daily News, said one victim shown in a footage is a 46-year-old man from Hoboken, New Jersey, identified as Ralph Santiago. He was found dead as his neck was broken and head lodged between iron fence posts.

Video surveillance shows Santiago who unsuspectingly walking in an alleyway in broad daylight, and just as he is about to pass a group of teenagers, one launches the fatal knockout blow. Santiago fell down on the ground head on, without being able to use his hand to prevent hitting the ground.

When asked about the reason for doing the game, very disturbing answers are given. "For the fun of it," one teen said in the video. "They just want to see if you got enough strength to knock somebody out," said by another.

Victims all over US have been reporting the attacks. One local woman, who was attacked on 14th Street NW in Columbia Heights on Thursday, tells DCist.com that she believes to have been a target of this game. A group of around eight males on bikes came up behind her, with one immediately hitting her in the head.

In May, a 15-year-old and a 13-year-old were arrested for killing a 51-year-old man named Michael Daniels. These Syracuse, New Yorker teens not only lodged a sucker punch to the victim, but also stomped him to death. Also, Lewis Rice, 46, was beaten so badly during a robbery on 23 February 2012 that he never regained consciousness in the hospital. The attackers of Rice were identified as Deshawn Owens and Donald Cotton, who were 16 and 15 years old at the time (photo above). Another 72-year-old St. Louis man was knocked out and killed with just one punch in 2011, the knockout game ‘player’ is now in prison, serving a life sentence.