Monday, September 26, 2005

Saint Paul Teen In Critical Condition After Gang Beating

A 13-year-old boy was severely beaten and a teenage girl was assaulted in St. Paul Friday night, police said.
Michael Duong
Michael Duong was standing outside a house near Payne Avenue and Ivy Avenue East talking with a teenage girl when the incident occurred, police said. Police said a sports utility vehicle containing four people pulled up around 10:30 p.m. A male suspect with a bat got out and yelled, "Are you a Blood?" The suspect beat Duong and the girl with the bat, police said. Duong was struck on the head and was taken to Regions Hospital with severe head injuries. He remained in critical condition Saturday night. Police said the girl suffered minor injuries. Huong Duong, Michael Duong's aunt, said her nephew was standing just half a block away from her home with a friend when it happened. "We were having a party here. A barbeque in the family yard," Huong Duong said. "All he was doing was walking out on the street." Detectives said there is no indication either of the victims were affiliated with gangs. Police said the only apparent motive was that Michael Duong was wearing a red sweatshirt and the Bloods are known for wearing red."It was scary for us. We wonder why someone would do this to a little boy," Huong Duong said.Michael Duong's family said the boy is an outgoing and smart seventh grader.The suspect was described as a Hispanic male in his early 20s with a muscular build and black, spiked hair. He was approximately 6 feet tall and was wearing a blue shirt with the words "New York" on the front.Police believed the suspect's vehicle was possibly gray in color. They said they had few leads.Police said there were at least three witnesses in the vehicle and were hoping someone could come forward with more. They are asking anyone with information to call them at 651-291-1111. They said callers could remain anonymous."It's a tragedy for the entire community," St. Paul Police Commander Colleen Luna said. "We worry about our kids. We need to solve this. We need the community to help us solve this."