Martin Marshall (right) recounts the attack by a group of teens on himself and his family while they were watching a Fourth of July fireworks display in Firestone Park. His daughter, Rachel Hopson, 15, (left) and wife, Yvonne Marshall, listen. (Michael Chritton/Akron Beacon Journal)
By Phil Trexler
Beacon Journal staff writer
Jul 07, 2009
Akron police say they aren't ready to call it a hate crime or a gang initiation.
But to Marty Marshall, his wife and two kids, it seems pretty clear.
It came after a family night of celebrating America and freedom with a fireworks show at Firestone Stadium. Marshall, his family and two friends were gathered outside a friend's home in South Akron.
Out of nowhere, the six were attacked by dozens of teenage boys, who shouted ''This is our world'' and ''This is a black world'' as they confronted Marshall and his family.
The Marshalls, who are white, say the crowd of teens who attacked them and two friends June 27 on Girard Street numbered close to 50. The teens were all black.
''This was almost like being a terrorist act,'' Marshall said. ''And we allow this to go on in our neighborhoods?''
They said it started when one teen, without any words or warning, blindsided and assaulted Marshall's friend as he stood outside with the others.
When Marshall, 39, jumped in, he found himself being attacked by the growing group of teens.
His daughter, Rachel, 15, who weighs about 90 pounds, tried to come to his rescue. The teens pushed her to the ground.
His wife, Yvonne, pushed their son, Donald, 14, into bushes to keep him protected.
''My thing is,'' Marshall said, ''I didn't want this, but I was in fear for my wife, my kids and my friends. I felt I had to stay out there to protect them, because those guys were just jumping, swinging fists and everything.
''I'm lucky. They didn't break my ribs or bruise my ribs. I thank God, they concentrated on my thick head because I do have one. They were trying to take my head off my spine, basically.''
After several minutes of punches and kicks, the attack ended and the group ran off. The Marshalls' two adult male friends were not seriously hurt.
''I don't think I thought at that moment when I tried to jump in,'' Rachel Marshall said. ''But when I was laying on the ground, I was just scared.''
Marshall was the most seriously injured. He suffered a concussion and multiple bruises to his head and eye. He said he spent five nights in the critical care unit at Akron General Medical Center.
The construction worker said he now fears for his family's safety, and the thousands of dollars in medical bills he faces without insurance.
''I knew I was going to get beat, but not as bad as I did,'' Marshall said. ''But I did it to protect my family. I didn't have a choice. There was no need for this. We should be all getting along. But to me, it seems to be racist.''
Akron police are investigating. Right now, the case is not being classified as a racial hate crime. There were no other reports of victims assaulted by the group that night.
The department's gang unit is involved in the investigation, police said.
''We don't know if it's a known gang, or just a group of kids,'' police Lt. Rick Edwards said.
The Marshalls say they fear retaliation at home or when they go outside. They are considering arming themselves, but they're concerned about the possible problems that come with guns.
For now, they are hoping police can bring them suspects. They believe they can identify several of the attackers.
''This makes you think about your freedom,'' Marshall said. ''In all reality, where is your freedom when you have this going on?'
(Where is the outrage, why isn't this being reported in the main stream media? This further proves to me that we are in deed living in a world when we need to create an organization "National Association of White People." As Caucasians become more and more a minority nationality, Caucasians need to have representation. Now that sounds like some Hope and Change I can believe in! Yeah, I said it and you are entitled to my opinion. VN8)
WHEN RESEARCHING THIS POST I ALSO FOUND THIS:
Police Arrest 2 In Gang Attack On NY Man
30-Year-Old Man Remains In Critical Condition, Cops Look Toward Bias Motivation
VALLEY STREAM, N.Y. (CBS) ― Police have made two arrests but are searching for at least a dozen other suspects in a weekend attack that critically injured a Long Island man.
Police say they're investigating a possible bias motive in the beating. They note that the victim is white and the teenagers involved were all black.
Detectives don't know what prompted the incident. But they say there are reports that racial comments were made by someone at the scene.
Nassau County police say the 30-year-old Valley Stream man was repeatedly kicked and punched in the head, face and chest early Sunday outside his home. He suffered a fractured eye socket and a concussion.
The two suspects were awaiting arraignment on gang assault charges.
The victim remains in critical condition at a Long Island hospital.