Passers-By Ignore Brutally Beaten Homeless Man on Sidewalk

Attack, apathy caught on surveillance camera

WASHINGTON -- The brutal beating of a homeless man and the indifference of the people who walked by the injured man were caught on a surveillance camera Tuesday, WJLA reported.

In an apparent argument over a beer (single-sales ban, anyone?) near 14th Street and Parkwood Place in Columbia Heights, one man began punching the victim at 5:15 p.m., knocking the victim to the ground. At 5:20 p.m., after the victim got back up, a second man knocked over the homeless man, who apparently hit his head on a minivan. He did not get up again.

But it wasn't until 5:37 p.m. that anyone decided to help the victim. Someone inside the Pan Am grocery store called 911, and help arrived two minutes later, WJLA reported.

In the meantime, many people passed by the injured man -- some even stopped -- but nobody offered any assistance. The surveillance video shows the driver of the minivan loading his groceries into the vehicle, pushing the cart away past the victim and driving away.

The victim, Jose Sanchez, was on life support with bleeding on the brain.  He died Friday at a hospital.

Police have charged 32-year-old Maxmillo Argueta and 57-year-old Humberto Escobar, both of D.C., with aggravated assault. Police spokesman Quintin Peterson says the men will face new charges in light of Sanchez's death.

Police records show that Escobar told detectives that he punched Sanchez after he called Escobar a homosexual, The Washington Post reported.

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