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$5K Reward Offered For St. Patrick's Day Parade Attack Info

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- A 52-year-old Victoria man is recovering after being punched by a stranger while he walked in downtown Minneapolis' St. Patrick's Day Parade last Thursday.

There is now a big reward to find the attacker who broke a bone in the victim's face.

As the parade was ending, the victim was walking with his family near Marquette Avenue and 5th Street.

That is when a group of teenagers and young men approached. Out of nowhere, one of them punched the man in the face.

"It was a very unfortunate, uncalled for, illegal act of the type that we simply want to call out," Steve Cramer, president and CEO of the Minneapolis Downtown Council, said.

The victim spent the night at Hennepin County Medical Center to be treated for his injuries, which included at least one broken bone.

MDC is now offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the attacker.

"Overall, we have a very safe downtown. But when we do have these violent incidents, it's disturbing," Cramer said. "And in this case [we want to] really put a sharp point in the ground and say, 'This is not acceptable,' and we want to do what we can to kind of bring this to an end."

It is not the first time the St. Patrick's Day Parade has ended with violence. Three hundred teenagers came to downtown Minneapolis last year to start fights and block streets.

Police made half a dozen arrests. This year, with a strong police presence, there were only three incidents linked to the parade. But Cramer says that is three too many.

"Part of the concern is that the things that normally deter this kind of illegal activity, things that are really normally outside the bounds of what is acceptable, don't seem to be working as well," Cramer said.

The victim, who was actually in the parade, is expected to make a full recovery.

Police say his attacker was a black male, 15- to 20-years-old, and he was wearing a burnt orange sweatshirt.

Police have not released any surveillance video, but they are looking through some images taken from local businesses.

Anyone with information is being urged to contact CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or text your tip to the number 274637 (CRIMES).

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