POMPANO BEACH, Florida. (TodayNews) — A seemingly ordinary movie night in Pompano Beach took a harrowing turn when an argument over seating escalated into a vicious assault that wounded a 63-year-old man and sent the attacker searching for it.
Detectives from the Broward Sheriff’s Office’s Violent Crime Unit on Thursday released surveillance footage of the incident, asking the public for help in identifying the culprit aggressor.
According to the BSO, the incident took place on Monday, July 10, shortly before 10 p.m. at the AMC Pompano Beach 18 theater at 2315 N. Federal Highway.
Victim purchased VIP tickets with advance seating for viewing.
Entering the theatre, the victim and his wife were surprised to find a man and a woman sitting in their reserved seats.
“The victim politely told him to get up from his seat,” BSO spokeswoman Claudine Caro said.
However, the situation quickly escalated when the unidentified subject retaliated and confronted the victim aggressively, coming dangerously close to her face and forcing the victim to retreat, inadvertently ending up on the stairs in the aisle.
The tension grew even more, and the confrontation turned into a physical one.
The mobile phone video captured the moment when the aggressor forcefully pushed the victim to the floor, as a result of which he lost his balance and fell onto the stairs.
The subject continued the attack, repeatedly punching the defenseless victim in the face. Witnesses on the spot rushed to help the victim and intervened, dragging the attacker away.
After an argument, the subject and the woman left the theater.
On Thursday afternoon, a 7News film crew showed moviegoers outside the multiplex a mobile phone video.
“We are here every week,” said André Dutra.
“It’s scary,” the woman said.
“The victim had to be taken to a local hospital. He suffered head and face injuries,” Karo said.
Moviegoers who spoke to 7News said they were in the theater the night of the attack.
“So we go in and there’s a bunch of cops and we don’t know what’s going on,” said Alice Dutra. “We already bought tickets online.”
Moviegoers said they saw flashing lights and felt fear in one of their favorite places.
“It just sucks because it’s a public place where everyone just wants to go and have fun and get away from whatever it is,” Andre Dutra said, “so if someone just beats up some innocent guy, then everyone else feels unsafe.”
As of Thursday evening, the object remains at large.
If you have any information about this incident or the subject’s whereabouts, please call Broward County Crime Squad at 954-493-TIPS. Remember that you can always remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $5,000.
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