Please share! – R. T.
The violent “Knockout Game” has come to Worcester.
In what has become a national – and sometimes deadly – phenomenon, randomly-selected victims are punched in the head by an assailant who is usually traveling in a group. In most instances, the motive in these attacks is pure violence and not robbery.
Four recent incidents have been reported in various parts of Worcester:
1. Friday – April 4, 2014 @ 707 Main Street
2. Monday – April 7, 2014 @ Richmond Ave near Big Bob’s Package Store
3. Sunday – April 13, 2014 @ 85 Millbury Street
4. Monday – April 14, 2014 @ Chatham Street heading toward Main Street
Worcester Police are asking all to pass this information along to their communities:
Keep your head up. Always be extremely alert and attentive as walking along urban settings.
At 10 feet – Pay Attention
* Be visually aware of your surroundings. Pay attention to any group that is either approaching or has just passed. Watch their hands, body posture, eyes, and the distance they keep.
* In “Knockout Game” incidents, most groups allow their victims to pass, and then attacks from the rear.
* When at all possible, allow an approaching group to pass you first by stepping to the side.
* If walking past a group and there is a wall off to your side, stay shoulder close to the wall. This limits the approach angle of a potential attacker and can give potential victims additional time to respond.
At 5 feet – Keep Hands Free, Listen & Look
* Remove your hands from your pockets. Purses, bags or backpacks should be on your non-dominant side.
* Listen to what is being said – or note any silence – within the group; in some attacks, the group wages a “silent storm” and stops talking as they get closer to their target.
* Watch eye contact from the group – some will look away as if they are trying to ignore their potential victims. Many times an attacker(s) will try so hard to blend in, they actually stick out.
At 2 feet – Manage your Positioning
* When possible, walk close to the right side of the person approaching you – in this “game,” most assailants like to take a big swing, and this physical positioning limits the strength of their hand movements, and/or causes them to have to make sudden adjustments to their movements, giving potential victims additional time to respond.
* Do not walk with your head down – attackers choose victims who they believe to be UNAWARE.
* Be prepared to block, duck, dodge, slip, cover and even defend yourself – if one punch fails, an attacker – or another member of their group – may follow with another.