The male suspects, including a 17-year-old, have each been charged in connection with the attack in Ballard that resulted in the victim being hospitalized for more than a month.
The beating lasted 45 seconds.
In a flurry of fists and feet, three young men pummeled, kicked and stomped a 36-year-old man after he stepped off a Metro RapidRide D Line bus on 15th Avenue Northwest in Ballard just after midnight April 5, according to court records and footage captured by video-surveillance cameras on the bus.
The victim suffered life-threatening intracranial bleeding and a fractured eye socket and will likely suffer long-term disability, say the first-degree-assault charges filed against his alleged assailants.
He was released from Harborview Medical Center on Tuesday, more than a month after he was admitted, said hospital spokeswoman Susan Gregg.
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The man, who apparently is homeless, did not respond to an interview request relayed by Gregg.
Charles “Dean” Stokes, 17, was arrested about 20 minutes after the attack, a half-mile south from the bus stop where the 36-year-old was attacked, say the charges.
Stokes, who has been charged as an adult with first-degree assault, remains jailed in lieu of $250,000 bail. Prosecutors are also reviewing another assault case against Stokes, who is suspected of punching another bus rider in the face in early March, breaking the man’s nose, according to charges filed in the April 5 incident.
A second suspect, Kulani Shintani, was arrested eight days later at his Ballard apartment, where his mother identified him from images taken from the surveillance video, say the charges. Shintani, 19, is being held in lieu of $500,000 bail.
King County sheriff’s detectives identified the third suspect, 22-year-old Duane Jack Jr., through police records and social media that connected him to Stokes, say the charges. Another bus rider who witnessed the beating positively identified Jack as one of the assailants, and Jack’s case manager and the director of a social-services program for youth also identified him from the bus footage, charging papers say.
He is also jailed in lieu of $250,000 bail.
The sheriff’s office provides police services to Metro Transit, which is why the agency is in charge of the assault investigation.
The Seattle Times obtained the video of the April 5 beating from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office through a public-disclosure request. However, the newspaper is not posting the video to protect the victim’s identity.
One assailant is heard on the video accusing the victim of trying to sexually assault a friend, but a possible motive for the attack isn’t mentioned in charging documents.
On the video, which shows footage from seven cameras, the victim is seated in the row closest to the middle door of the coach. Nearly eight minutes into the video, three young men are seen boarding the bus on Holman Road Northwest and Mary Avenue Northwest.
One man, in a black hoodie, says “hi” to the victim as he and the others head to the back of the articulated coach. About two minutes later, one of the men moves up and sits a few seats behind the victim, the video shows.
The victim is seen pulling the signal cord. At that point, the man seated behind him makes a gesture with his left hand while looking at his two companions, then jerks his thumb to the rear doors. The man in the black hoodie gives him a thumbs up.
At the bus stop on 15th Avenue Northwest at Northwest 70th Street, the victim and the man seated behind him exit through the middle door and the two other men leave through the rear door, the video shows. One man is then seen shoving the victim toward the other two, who throw a series of punches while the first man pushes at the victim to keep him from getting back on the bus.
One of the men grabs the victim from behind and pulls him to the ground, where the victim is kicked and punched.
“Hey, stop that! He can’t fight,” the bus driver is heard saying.
A male passenger is seen confronting the suspects from inside the bus and yells for them to stop.
“The cops are coming right now!” he yells.
One of the attackers turns to the witness and tells him, “He tried to rape my homie,” as the two other men continue the beating.
The witness puts his hands up and moves back. “I don’t know what’s going on,” he says.
The victim “was completely defenseless as he lay on the concrete and offered up no effective defense against the continued assault,” say charging papers, noting some of the kicks caused the victim’s head to bounce off the pavement.