BALTIMORE (WJZ) — It’s the heart of Baltimore’s tourism industry, but the Inner Harbor turned into a nightmare for a visiting family of 10 earlier this month.
Out of nowhere, they were swarmed and beaten by a large number of teenagers.
While the family that was attacked does not want to be identified, they do want their story to be heard. They told their story to WJZ off-camera.
“They swarmed us,” said Stacey. “They hit my husband in the head. They knocked him out… and then it was just complete bedlam.”
It happened on the day of the Baltimore Marathon, Oct. 21. The event brought a big crowd to the harbor that night. The 10 family members, from grandparents to grandchildren, were walking by the H&M store when they were overwhelmed.
“And they punched my nephew in the face and knocked him to the floor,” Stacey said. “My sister went to protect her son, and they were kicking her. I was knelling with my husband screaming ‘Somebody help us, why is nobody helping us?’”
Baltimore City police spokesman T.J. Smith says groups of teens have been a problem in the city.
“It’s always groups of them,” he said. “Someone in that group starts it, and that’s what we saw in this situation.”
In March, a group followed a man downtown, hurling insults, which quickly escalated into a physical assault, and a rapid scattering by the attackers. The same technique used last week when two bicyclists were robbed and beaten by a group.
“The disrespect from some of these juveniles is just absolutely unbelievable and stunning,” Smith said. “And it should be to society.”
“Maybe if there’d been police on foot, those people would never have been congregating there, looking for a fight, you know looking to hit somebody,” said another victim, Sal.
“Well we did have cops all over the place, but again they probably got there relatively quickly, but we can’t have cops on every corner in every single block of the city,” according to Smith.
While police are reviewing surveillance video of the attack, the victims can’t stop replaying it in their minds.
“After this, I can’t sleep at night, seeing what happened over and over again in my head,” Stacey said. “Seeing my family attacked.”
Two members of the family suffered concussions. Others came away with scrapes and bruises, and a vow never return to the Inner Harbor.
As yet, police have no suspects in the attack. Because the group appears to have been made up of juveniles, if they are found they cannot be identified.