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Arrest Made, Suspects Identified In Senseless Beating Of Vietnam Vet

By Elizabeth Hur

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Police make an arrest in the vicious beating of a Vietnam veteran.

Lt. George McClay said, “We had a lot of help from juvenile probation, the school district police and a lot of citizens. Had a lot of phone calls and tips online, I bet I had 30-40 phone calls tonight alone and it’s probably just disgust from what happened to that poor gentleman.”

The 64-year-old veteran, who lost his eye while serving his country, was violently beaten during an attack by a group of teens on a Philadelphia street earlier this week. (see related story)

The attack happened shortly after 6 p.m. Tuesday in the 5000 block of N. 5th Street in the city’s Olney section.

“These animals are specializing on our elderly people out here and a gentleman who served our country,” McClay said.

According to investigators, Edward Schaefer (pictured below) was walking to meet his wife at the bus stop when he was approached from behind. McClay said one of the suspects began the violent attack and at least one other juvenile joined in on the beating.

The suspects then fled the scene on foot after police say a Good Samaritan came to the victim’s rescue.

“He fell and that’s when I came across the street. When they saw me, that’s when they scattered,” said Donald Jones. “He was trying to talk and I said, ‘No, stay there. I got you.’”

Schaefer was rushed to Albert Einstein Medical Center with fractured skull and severe injuries to his face and hand.

“They just smashed every bone in his face,” Kate Schaefer, the victim’s wife told Eyewitness News, “I can’t tell you the words. I guess I was just happy that he was alive.”

“I’m disgusted by this whole thing,” McClay said. “I’m surprised he survived.”

McClay said “one more shot the wrong way” and this could have been a homicide investigation.

victim Arrest Made, Suspects Identified In Senseless Beating Of Vietnam Vet

Edward Schaefer, 64

The Fraternal Order of Police offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspects.

By Thursday night, police said with help from the public, they identified all six individuals seen in the surveillance video they released of the incident.

Police said the juveniles range in age from 14-16 and are all from the Olney area.

Further investigation revealed there was a motive behind the initial attack.

“The complainant was on a cell phone when they walked by so it was actually a robbery. What they did after that, nobody’s been able to explain that to us yet,” McClay said.

Police say two 15-year-olds will be charged for taking part in the beating and robbery. The remaining four juveniles are considered witnesses at this time.

As of Thursday night, one 15-year-old had turned himself in. Police hope to arrest their second 15-year-old suspect on Friday.

  • Arrest of Phila. teen in brutal beating of Vietnam vet – CBS News | NewsAsean.Com

    […] CBS Philly reports that 64-year-old Edward Schaefer, who had lost an eye while serving his country, was violently beaten by a group of teens on a city street on Tuesday, while waiting for his wife to get off of a bus. […]

  • Laurie

    I agree with all the above. But what really DISGUSTS me is that this man survived Vietnam, Took a direct hit to the face with a Bullet, only to get viciously beat down by the people he served to protect. American children.Again, DISGUSTING! My prayers to this Veteran and his family. I beg the courts to treat this for what it is. God bless ALL who serve(d).

  • Mike Moore

    ALL OF THESE KIDS took place in this robbery/hate crime mob mentality. If only two and not 6 were there it would have been nothing. When you get 6 boys together thats a flash mob who think they are owners of the free world since they are all underage. For police to let the other 4 go is exactly what is wrong with this city.

    Judication is not enough, they need to be sent to adult prison but the Judges won’t do it. I say they get 2 years tops and will free at 18 to GET MONEY.

  • SMSgt USAF Ret.

    The silence is deafening, where is Rev. Al or Dressy Jesse. We all know what would be happening if the ethnicity of those involved were reversed in this case . Philly would be on fire. The NAACP, SPLC and the lame stream media, CNN, ABC, CBS, FOX and MSNBC would be shouting from the roof tops about the heinous race crime that took place. And it was heinous. But hardly a word of condemnation from leadership in the black community. Sorry, I meant it was a robbery gone bad and not a race crime.Yeah right. God help us.

  • Jerry Frey
  • Monsire

    We are with you and we know what is going on all the way from San Diego. I am a combat veteran and father and black criminality is the greatest threat to our country. This has been going on my whole life and all that has been done is to continue to pacify the black community. This behavior is going on everywhere and it is destroying the USA. Our hearts and prayers are with you.

  • Jeaniene Alexander

    I am the daughter in-law of Mr. Scheafer. I thank you all for the outpouring of well wishes and ask that you keep Ed in your prayers. We in the family want JUSTICE. These young men knew what they were doing and didn’t care what would happen to my father in-law. Please, support our family and write to the DA’s office and demand that these men be charged as adults, as it was an adult crime that they commited.

    • noname

      Tell your father in law everyone wishes him well and he’s one tough o.m. Surviving Vietnam (thank you for your service) and now at our age it took a couple of punks to sneak up behind him to try and take him on. they’d of never tried to take him on face to face or one on one. He went out there to meet his wife at the bus stop because he knows what the streets are like – protecting her.

      i would like to see the law removed that protects the identity of juveniles covicted of violent crimes.

      i’m glad Mr. Scheafer is alive and more importantly he didn’t lose sight in the one remaining eye.

      • noname

        correction, i didn’t mean to say more importantly, meant to say almost as important.

        anyway, God bless and i’m contacting the DA’s office.

    • Patricia Meyer

      I am writing to the DA’s office and I will pass this message on. You all are in my prayers. Justice must be served . This is an HATE CRIME….we all need to come out of our shells and support your family.

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