Saturday, December 20, 2014

The reality of hate crimes really bewilder some victims. Other papers report the race of the perps but the PC types will not.

Lawyer bewildered as to why he was beaten unconscious but not robbed of Rolex, cash

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on December 19, 2014 at 6:28 PM, updated December 20, 2014 at 2:06 AM
Bill Callaham, a California lawyer, never had a chance to hand over his Rolex, cell phone or hundreds of dollars in cash. The men who attacked him from behind in the Central Business District never made any demands. They beat him unconscious, breaking his nose and his jaw. And afterward, he said, they took nothing.
"If somebody had confronted me and asked for money, I would've happily given them my money," Callaham said Friday, a week after the assault. "I don't know if it was random, I mean, I have no idea. I just think it's a sad state of society right now."
The 66-year-old from Sacramento, Calif., was in town to educate other lawyers on presenting evidence to juries in civil trials. But instead of giving that talk last week, he spent several days in the hospital undergoing facial reconstructive surgery.
After dinner at Commander's Palace, Callaham spent the evening last Thursday (Dec. 11) walking around the French Quarter and enjoying live music. He started walking back to his hotel at the Hyatt Regency, at the corner of Loyola and Poydras avenues, around 2 a.m., he said.
He crossed over Canal Street into the CBD, and he said he doesn't remember exactly which street he was on when he noticed a group of possibly three men walk past him on the other side of the street. He doesn't remember what they looked like, other than one appeared to be in his 20s. He remembers hearing one of the men mumble something, but doesn't know what it was.
Like a film, he said his memory then cuts to him staggering, blood gushing down his face, leaning over a trashcan. He could tell his jaw and nose were broken but he was bewildered as to why. He said he has no memory of the actual attack because he had been knocked unconscious.
"I have no memory at all, but maybe that's good," he said. "I was completely out. I don't even know how long I was out."
A car pulled up with two women inside. "Sir, are you hurt?" he recalled hearing. "Do you need help?"
"I don't know," he remembered replying. They asked him again if he needed help, and then he started to realize he had been attacked.  "Yeah, I think I do."
The women took him to Ochsner Baptist Hospital, where staff sent him to Interim LSU Hospital for treatment at the trauma center there. In addition to his broken bones, his lower lip had been cut open and six of his teeth were broken. Doctors stitched him up, operated on his nose, implanted a plate to secure his jaw and wired all his teeth to his jaw.
He will be on a liquid diet for at least the next two months.
He gave a statement to a New Orleans police officer who visited him in the hospital Friday morning. A police spokesman confirmed that the report was made at Ochsner around 4:50 a.m. He told the officers what happened.
The officer noted in a report that Callaham had visible facial injuries, a spokesman said. "Hospital medical personnel advised that the victim's jaw was fractured, he had lacerations to his top and bottom lips and his front teeth were chipped," Officer Garry Flot wrote in an email.
"The victim was in possession of all of his property at the time of the report."
After he was released from the hospital, Callaham returned to the CBD area to look for blood, but was unsuccessful. He said he didn't think there was surveillance footage of the beating. The case will likely remain unsolved for lack of evidence, he said.
"I think it's bad for the citizens of New Orleans and visitors of New Orleans that they have to put up with this, if it's happening frequently," Callaham said.
Another brazen French Quarter armed robbery caught on cameraThe New Orleans Police Department is searching for eight suspects they say attacked three men in the 1000 block of Gov. Nicholls Street in the French Quarter on (Dec. 17th). Police say the attackers stabbed one of the three men in the chest during the armed robbery.
There have been several violent robberies in the French Quarter area lately. On Wednesday night, police said a group of possibly eight assailants robbed three men and stabbed one of them in the 1000 block of Governor Nicholls Street.
But besides Callaham's case, police haven't received any reports of seemingly random beatings that did not involve a robbery, said NOPD spokesman Officer Frank Robertson III.
Callaham said he has visited New Orleans many times, but usually stays closer to the Mississippi River, in the Windsor Court Hotel. He said he was unfamiliar with the area around the Hyatt. After the attack, he said friends told him that the area is not safe.
"I've walked by myself late at night all over the world," he said. "I've never had any concerns about my safety for doing that."
He said he still plans to return to New Orleans, but he will take more precautions in the future and try not to walk alone. Mainly, he just feels grateful now. "I'm very thankful that I'm alive and I'll get through all this." 

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