D.C. police said they're investigating the apparently unprovoked assault of a man on a popular bike trail Tuesday evening.
The 37-year-old man said he was biking home to Silver Spring, Md., along the Metropolitan Branch Trail, an 8-mile path that runs from Union Station to Silver Spring, when a young man broke away from a group of boys and girls and hit him in the face. The group then surrounded him, and he was struck in the head and body before the group fled.
Jennifer Gerholdt, who went to the victim’s aid, described him as covered in blood with an eye swollen shut.
“I was injured pretty badly in my left eye,” the bicyclist told News4. “I’ve got some bruises on my body. I’ve got a couple fractures around my eye and three pretty severe lacerations.”
Nothing was taken from the man, and police said they don't believe robbery was the motive.
“Not a single word was said by him or the others,” the bicyclist said. “I was screaming out, ‘Stop!’ and ‘Help!’ but the individual who did this didn’t say a word to me.”
Police said that they consider this is an unprovoked assault and not part of a pattern connected to other beatings.
“I was horrified, absolutely horrified, because it could have been me,” Gerholdt said. “I would have been defenseless.”