It’s not just a game anymore; it’s deadly.
The violent and racially charged “Knockout Game” – where participants, often black youths, attack an unsuspecting victim unprovoked, attempting to “knock out” the target – has gained increased national attention. But there is one shocking aspect of the brutal trend that is rarely mentioned: Nationwide, there have been at least six deaths attributed to the Knockout Game.
Sept. 21, 2013 – Syracuse, N.Y.
A 70-year-old white man named James Gifford was leaving 7-Eleven at 6:00 a.m. Four teens were walking towards the store. As Gifford walked across the parking lot, an 18-year-old black male named Romeo Williams punched Gifford with no provocation, knocking him unconscious.
According to Police Chief Frank Fowler, Williams then walked into the 7-Eleven and “celebrated” the attack.
Gifford’s death is suspected of being a knockout game attack.
But when Gifford fell, he struck his head on the pavement. Four days later, the elderly man died from a brain injury, a diffuse axonal injury, that damaged both the white and gray matter and later caused his heart to stop beating, according to the medical examiner’s Office.
A news report showing several recorded instances of the “knockout game” in progress can be seen below:
Sept. 10, 2013 – Jersey City, N.J.
A 46-year-old homeless Hoboken man named Ralph Eric Santiago was brutally killed by three teenagers, ages 13 and 14. Santiago was found with his neck broken and his head wedged between two iron fence posts.
Prosecutors say it appears three men followed Santiago and struck his head from behind for no apparent reason. He then collapsed onto the fence.
May 23, 2013 – Syracuse, N.Y.
Michael Daniels, a 51-year-old white man, was "beaten and stomped to death," the Associated Press reported. Daniels had been standing outside of a convenience store. A 16-year-old was found guilty of manslaughter in Daniels' death. A 13-year-old co-defendant admitted that he started the beating by trying to knock Daniels out with one punch. Neither criminal knew Daniels or had any reason to attack him.
April 6, 2011 – St. Louis, Mo.
Hoang Nguyen, 72, was walking home from the grocery store with his wife, Yen, when a group of four young people approached. A black male, 18-year-old Elex Murphy, left the group and walked up to the Nguyens. Murphy then grabbed Hoang's shirt and took hold of his chin, pushing it to the side to make a "clear target for his fist," recalled Yen. Murphy punched Hoang so hard that he fell to the ground and struck his head. Then Murphy attacked Yen, punching her with such force that she suffered a broken eye socket. Yen watched as her husband was next kicked, repeatedly.
Hoang died of his injuries later the day of the attack.
Murphy was convicted of second-degree murder and first-degree assault.
For his writing about the Nguyen case and the knockout game, St. Louis journalist John H. Tucker won an award from the National Association of Black Journalists. Tucker's award-winning article was entitled, "Knockout King: Kids Call It a Game. Academics Call It a Bogus Trend. Cops Call It Murder."
Oct. 29, 2010 – New London, Conn.
Six black teens "decided to go into New London and assault a random person after becoming bored," according to local news. The group attacked a white 25-year-old named Matthew Chew. He died of six stab wounds.
A judge in the case, Susan B. Handy, spoke of the "pack mentality" among the six. In court, Chew's sister Melinda Fowler spoke about the crime's impact on her children, who would often ask her when "Uncle Matt" was coming back.
Fowler said, "My son asked if we could have his birthday in heaven so Uncle Matt could be there."
Aug. 4, 2009 – Decatur, Ill.
Two black half-brothers, Elliott T. Murphy, 18, and Deonta "Fuss" Johnson, 16, were convicted of first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder in the stomping death of white 61-year-old Jerry Newingham, and the similar attack of white 46-year-old Kevin S. Wilson.
The teens punched, kicked, jumped on and stomped Newingham, who never regained consciousness. Seventy minutes later, the teens attacked Wilson.
While not confirmed as the Knockout Game by witnesses or law enforcement, the killing of Colton Ryan Gleason of St. Cloud, Minn., in September 2012 bore many similarities.
Gleason was walking his girlfriend and another female home one night. A car passed them, then stopped, and Jesse Smithers stepped out. According to St. Cloud local news, Smithers "admitted he punched Gleason unprovoked and for no reason" and "admitted that Gleason had not been threatening, either verbally or physically, before he punched him."
Gleason died after a punch to his face caused bleeding and swelling to his brain. 18-year old Jesse Smithers, who is black, pled guilty to the second-degree murder of Gleason, a 20-year-old white.
Though many press reports and partisans deny the knockout game is a trend, the Associated Press reports, "Authorities across the country say they have seen an increase in deaths and assaults where teens are playing 'knockout.'"
The game, played almost exclusively by black youths with non-blacks as victims, recently garnered surprising criticism after years of media silence. Al Sharpton wrote in the Huffington Post last month that the attacks are "racist, period."
Regardless of motivation, whether racism or simply moral degeneracy, the knockout game is more than just a brutal prank – in several cases, it's murder.
Black mobs routinely terrorize cities across the country, but the media and government are silent. Read the detailed account of rampant racial crime in "White Girl Bleed A Lot: The Return of Racial Violence to America and How the Media Ignore It."
See a trailer for "White Girl Bleed a Lot":