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January 31, 2006

I’m Curious

What led to this attack? Was it a robbery? A random attack? Gang-related? A hate crime?

A UPS driver was savagely beaten by middle school students while delivering packages in the western suburbs.

The attack happened in Bellwood along the 3200 block of St. Charles.

In a CBS 2 excusive, Joanie Lum talked to the man who was savagely beaten just trying to do his job.

UPS driver Thomas Murphy says he was beaten by a group of school kids on busy St. Charles Road in Bellwood, the route he has driven for 12 years.

He says a teenager walked out in front of his delivery truck Friday at about 3 p.m. When he stopped the truck, 15 to 20 youths surrounded him.

"Somebody clocked me with a pipe. I took kicks from my right. My eyes caked over. I tried to get up and defend myself as best I could," Murphy said.

He was beaten from his head to his ankles.

"I remember being down on one knee, falling to the ground with kids on top of me," Murphy said.

He thinks a passing motorist called for help.

The Bellwood police believe the attackers came from Roosevelt Middle School, located a couple of blocks away. They have stepped up patrols in the area.

“If other delivery drivers are going to face this, we want our patrols in the area," said Bellwood Police Chief Robert Collins.

“Somebody should be held accountable for these kids. They run wild like a pack of wolves, where's the parents?" Murphy said.

In spite of his trauma, Murphy says he wants to get back to work.

"I have every intention of getting back on my route. I'd like to do it with some sense of security," he said.

Police say an anonymous witness has come forward with the names of several people involved in the attack. Murphy identified a couple of people in a photo lineup Monday afternoon, but no one's been arrested yet.

Photos indicate the victim was white. The story gives no indication as to the race/ethnicity of the attackers. A quick check of the information on the school mentioned in the article shows that its test scores are abysmal and that it is 98% minority. I’ve not been able to locate crime statistics for the area. The article makes me wonder, though, what we are not being told about the attack.





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