A 76-year-old woman was the latest victim in the violent and sometimes deadly “knockout” game that has been making headlines in recent weeks. Yvonne Small was attacked over the weekend by an unidentified black male in Brooklyn, N.Y., who fled the scene shortly after attacking the elderly woman. She was taken to a local hospital and treated for a head injury before being released.
New York City Councilman David Greenfield said an investigation and search has begun for the attacker and promised justice when he is caught. “That’s why I called on the NYPD and District Attorney’s Office to literally throw the book at these individuals and to charge them with many crimes, including hate crimes and gang assault, because that’s what it is,” he said.
At least nine other attacks related to knockout games have taken place in NYC, leading to Republican state Assemblyman Jim Tedisco proposing a bull that would classify knockout game attacks as gang assaults. This means that even if the attackers were minors, they would be tried as adults and face prison terms of up to 24 years.
“These twisted and cowardly thugs are preying on innocent bystanders and they don’t care if the victims are young, old, a man or woman,” said Tedisco. “Life isn’t a video game. These are real people whose lives are not only being put in jeopardy but in many cases destroyed.”
At the moment, age has everything to do with sentencing related to knockout games. Two Syracuse teenagers were sentenced last May to 18 months in jail after fatally beating and killing a man. However, 20-year-old Elex Murphy of St. Louis, Mo., was sentenced to life in prison that month for killing a Vietnamese immigrant in 2011 as part of a knockout game.