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Reading homeless man who was savagely beaten speaks out

By John Craven, Reporter, JCraven@wfmz.com
Published On: Jan 25 2014 04:21:00 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 25 2014 05:30:00 PM CST

Homeless beating victim speaks out

READING, Pa. -

A homeless man who was severely beaten at a laundromat in Reading is speaking out after a second attack at the same business.

"This is a life changing thing for me," said the victim, who asked to remain anonymous.

Surveillance video shows four thugs mercilessly kicking the man, even striking him with metal laundry baskets. The victim said he spent five days in the hospital with brain injuries.

The attack happened on Jan. 12 at the Penn Street Laundromat, the first of two incidents at the same business that week.

Police said the suspects kept coming back for more.

"They came back five times from what I'm told," said the victim.

"I think robbery was an afterthought," added Sgt. John Solecki, Reading Police Dept. "I think they really just took the pleasure in assaulting him."

Two suspects, Ana Ferrer-Reyes and Keith D. Allison, are already in custody. Police are still looking for two more: a woman wearing a striped sweater with a white and green ball cap, and a man in a red cap, black hooded sweatshirt and gray sweatpants.

The male assailant may have been spotted Saturday morning inside a bar next door, sitting just feet away from the victim.

"He was in there about a half hour ago, just before y'all showed up," said the victim. "I didn't know it was him."

"We checked the area and we were not able to locate him," Solecki said.

Police don't know what might have motivated the attack, but the victim said he has had run-ins with drug users in the area before.

"I confronted a couple of them and that could be a repercussion," he said.

Just days after the beating, someone robbed a senior citizen at the same laundromat. Video obtained exclusively by 69 News shows the 70-year-old woman nearly falling to the ground after a man demanded all her money.

"We do not believe this is related to the other incident that we're investigating here," said Solecki.

In that case, police are looking for a tall black man in his mid-40s, wearing a dark jacket and white sneakers. Solecki said they identified a possible suspect inside the same bar Saturday morning, but he said no arrests are imminent.

Neighbors were rattled by two incidents in just one week.

"Doesn't make sense," said Ed Lilly, of Reading. "What are you going to get from a homeless person? It's almost like it's a sport."