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Violent Mugging Caught On Video In Midwood

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - The NYPD was seeking help from the public Monday in finding two people who attacked a man walking in Midwood in the early morning hours.

As CBS2's Hazel Sanchez reported, the attack was caught on disturbing surveillance video. It took place at around 12:48 a.m. at Avenue M near East 8th Street.

In the video, the victim, a 60-year-old man identified by Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) as "Eli," is punched and knocked headlong into a parked car. He sprawls on the ground and his attacker punches him three more times.

A second man runs up and the two then rifle through the victim's pockets. The two ran off with his wallet and cell phone, police said.

"He had no clue. He was in absolute shock," Hikind said. "The way he was attacked physically – hit, hit again in his head -- just an absolute horror."

The attack was recorded by Ariel Kohan's home security camera at 811 Avenue M.

"It's scary that something like this can happen in this area," Kohan said.

Hikind met with the battered victim, who was robbed of his cellphone and cash and needed more than 70 stitches to his head. Hikind then joined leaders of the area Shomrim at the crime scene to express their disgust for the vicious crime.

"In our community here in Midwood, that someone would be so maliciously, viciously attacked," Hikind said. "It's just like, what kind of people are capable of doing this?"

The Flatbush Shomrim released surveillance video of the suspects, whom they said were actively searching for a victim early Monday morning.

"We are following block by block all the video footage that we could retrieve. We have units out there, as I'm speaking right now, that are retrieving footage," said Baruch Moskowitz of the Flatbush Shomrim. "And I give a pledge to the community -- we will find these people."

After seeing video of the beating, neighbors such as Leslie Hefez are concerned that the suspects may return.

"It's scary. It's very, very frightening to think that they're looking for people to hurt in the neighborhood," Hafez said, "and you know, unfortunately, we're not ready to protect ourselves."
Hikind said he and New York State Sen. Simcha Felder (D-Brooklyn) were offering a $3,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest in the case. New York City Councilman David Greenfield also announced a $1,000 reward.

Anyone with any information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). You can also text your tip to CRIMES (274637) and then enter TIP577. You can also submit a tip via the Crime Stoppers website.

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