Most Attacks on the Homeless go unreported
A homeless 63-year old woman was beaten up today (9/29/2014) and her backpack was stolen?
At about 6:30 on a warm Hollywood Beach evening, just off A1A at an Intracoastal Park, Linda Lambert was waiting for a bus. Just like every day, she took the bus along the beach road in the evening.
Linda is one of a growing group of seniors who are homeless in this economy and, and she currently lives at the Homeless Voice Shelter on Federal Highway in Hollywood Florida. She has lived on and off the streets for over a decade.
Taking the bus was a normal daily routine, with no trouble. Until Friday night, her backpack made her a target. An old backpack without much in it (except some socks, jumbles of paper and a water bottle) was stolen from her.
Linda sat down and waited for the bus, when a man, Linda later described as Caucasian, clean cut and in his late 20’s, sat next to her. She thought nothing of it. They even chatted, and she recalled he seemed non threatening.
When Linda’s bus arrived she got up to board, and that’s when this unidentified man grabbed her backpack and would not let her go.
Linda resisted and then he hit her – a 63 year old woman – square in the face. He hit her so hard that she spun around, and then he was gone.
She describes the last thing she saw as a fist coming for her face which caused her to black out, left her bruised and battered.
Tragically, this happens a lot. According to Sean Cononie, Homeless Voice founder and an advocate for the homeless. When interviewed he said that he believes that the attacker knew Linda, and knew she was homeless.
For whatever reason this stranger wanted the backpack. It was planned and executed in advance. The perpetrator might have been local, and it is possible he does this often. To target the homeless, maybe seniors, and take whatever they have. Often, it’s all they have in this world.
Cononie also says that there have been an increase in these attacks on the homeless, often defenseless folks for whatever possessions they might have.
Sadly, the homeless who are the victims of attacks often won’t report it to the police out of fear, and if they get injured they will make a different excuse to avoid having to tell the authorities or go to the emergency room to seek treatment.
An easy crime against unsuspecting and undeserving people, perpetrated by cowards. All for a backpack.
Cononie urges anyone with information about this crime, or other crimes against the homeless to please alert the authorities. It’s natural for homeless to fear police, but the public can help protect them if they have any information or have witnessed a crime.
Now Linda Lambert is cautioning everyone to be careful, as she recovers from a eye and head injury as a result of the attack. She hopes her attacker gets caught soon.