Capt.: Calling beating anti-white was officer’s opinion

Cold-hearted bystanders jeered and laughed at an unconscious tourist lying at their feet after a vicious beating in Cincinnati, a video showed.

“Damn, n—a, you just got knocked the f–k out!” shouted one of the callous witnesses.

The man’s face was covered in blood as he lay motionless late Saturday in the city’s Fountain Square neighborhood.

The tourist, identified as 27-year-old Christopher McKnight of Indiana, was jumped by a crowd of black teens as Fourth of July crowds spilled into the square from a hip-hop concert, fireworks show and a nearby Reds baseball game, authorities said.

A police captain originally described the attack on the man as an “anti-white” crime, but police brass backpedaled on Monday, claiming it wasn’t clear if it was racially motivated, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

The disturbing footage shows a jeering crowd mocking McKnight following the assault.

You got knocked the f–k out, b—h,” called one of the bystanders.

But others on the street called for water and space to get the man to an ambulance. One man shoved the mocking young men away.

“That s–t ain’t cool, bro,” he said.

McKnight was hospitalized with a concussion, broken nose and other facial injuries, the Enquirer reported.

Tourist Christopher McKnight lies unconscious after a vicious beating as bystanders in Cincinnati laugh and crack jokes, a video shows.Bystanders in Cincinnati jeered and laughed at a tourist who was knocked out cold during a vicious beating on July 4, video shows.

Bystanders in Cincinnati jeered and laughed at a tourist who was knocked out cold during a vicious beating on July 4, video shows.

He was released from the hospital on Sunday.

The beating was part of a wild night in Fountain Square, stoking fears the city couldn’t handle the thousands of people expected to arrive for the Major League Baseball All-Star game scheduled for July 14.

During Saturday night’s unrest, one police officer was sucker punched in the face and another hit with a flying bottle as cops tried to control out-of-control crowds.

The wounded officers had returned to work by Monday, police said.

City leaders called the violence an aberration and vowed to staff downtown to keep the peace during All-Star weekend with hundreds of extra cops.

“We are the safest big city in America,” Police Chief Jeff Blackwell said on Monday.

Police have named no suspects in Saturday’s attack on the tourist from Indiana.


Police backed away Monday from an officer’s incident report that described the Saturday night assault on a man near Fountain Square as an “anti-white” crime.

In a police incident report filed at 3 a.m. Sunday, the reporting officer stated the assault that left Christopher McKnight, 27, bloodied and unconscious involved hate or bias. The officer’s typed explanation was that the violence was “anti-white.”

At a Monday afternoon news conference with other police and city leaders, Capt. Mike Neville said that description was incorrect.

He spoke just minutes after The Enquirer had obtained the incident report and posted a story on its contents.

In an interview later in the afternoon, Neville said categorizing the assault as a hate crime was the opinion of reporting officer Alicia Essert. She drew that conclusion, Neville said, because McKnight was attacked by a group of people from the “opposite race.”

It is too early in the investigation to determine whether race motivated the assault, Neville said.

No one has been charged in connection with McKnight’s beating, which occurred after a hip-hop concert at Fountain Square.

The incident report states McKnight, of Albany, Indiana, was jumped on and beaten during an “unruly crowd situation stemming from (the) Fountain Square event” around 11:30 p.m. The assault lasted five minutes.

McKnight was walking near Government Square, shortly after police had responded to a group that had been throwing bottles and fireworks at police at Fountain Square, Neville said.

A video posted to Facebook shows McKnight fighting with a group of people outside a parked bus. The fight moves back and forth along Government Square as more people join in and others try to stop it.

A break in the fight gives McKnight time to put on a shoe that he lost during the altercation. After putting on the shoe McKnight stumbles off camera.

He returns a few seconds later with his arms raised in what appears to be a confrontational gesture.

The fight resumes between McKnight and another man. The video shows a bystander enter the fight and push the other man away but McKnight follows them off camera.

Another video posted to Facebook showed McKnight lying on the ground while a group of people surrounded him. The video does not show the assault itself and has since been removed.

McKnight’s face was bloodied, and he appeared to be unconscious in the video. His black shirt was pulled up and appeared to have more blood on it.

People surrounding him can be heard laughing in the video.

One person stepped forward and pushed McKnight to his side in a recovery position. Another can be heard telling someone to call 911.

McKnight was taken to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center with minor injuries, according to the police report. He was released from the hospital Sunday.

On Monday, Neville said McKnight suffered a concussion, broken nose and facial injuries.

Seven people were arrested during the incident on Fountain Square. It’s unclear if any of the arrests are directly related to McKnight’s assault.


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