ST. LOUIS–(KMOX)–Police are looking into whether a 13-year old girl who failed to show up in court to testify against seven juveniles charged with assault in a Knockout Game attack had been intimidated.
“We will look into it and find out whether there is some credibility to it, and if there is we will pursue it,” said Police Chief Dan Isom.
Isom was responding to comments by Mayor Francis Slay, who spoke earlier this week about his belief that the girl was a victim of witness tampering.
“My strong guess is that she was intimidated, threatened not to testify which is why she did not show up,” Slay said.
The case fell apart and the second-degree assault charges were dropped, followed by cheers and high-fives among the defendants.
The October 21st attack injured Matt Quain, 52, who had been walking home from Schnuck’s grocery store with a neighbor along South Grand near McKean. Quain did not know his attackers and there was no attempt to rob him. Mayor Slay witnessed the aftermath, as his driver pulled over to assist the man spotted lying in the gutter.
In April of last year, a 72-year old Vietnamese immigrant was killed during a knockout game attack in south St. Louis. The Circuit Attorney charged 18-year old Elex Levell Murphy with first-degree murder, assault and two counts of armed criminal action.
Chief Isom was asked today if the sporadic wave of Knockout Game attacks is reason for law-abiding citizens to get a concealed-carry permit and carry a gun to protect themselves.
“I don’t want to get into an issue of telling people to arm themselves,” Isom said, “Certainly, you have to be vigilant and be aware of your surroundings. That’s important no matter where you are.”