Detroit police: Bystanders didn't intervene in attack on 91-year-old man

DETROIT (AP) - A 22-year-old man repeatedly punched a 91-year-old man in the head during a carjacking outside a convenience store, and a group of bystanders did nothing to stop him, police said.

Store surveillance video shows each blow Leonard Sims took to the side of his face in last week's attack. The footage also shows a group of people standing a few feet away who either didn't see the attack or chose not to get involved. "You can't really tell what they were focusing on," Maria Miller, a spokeswoman for the Wayne County prosecutor's office, said Monday.

At least one witness reported the attack, Miller said. Sims was treated at a hospital and released. He was outside his car in the store parking lot about 8:30 p.m. when a man walked up and asked for a light for his cigarette, according to the prosecutor's office.

The man then punched Sims at least a half-dozen times in the side of his head while Sims held onto the car door.

The video also shows the man using the door to knock Sims to the ground before taking the keys and driving off in the 2005 Chevy Malibu. Police arrested the man Thursday after a foot chase in Warren, just north of Detroit. Deonte Edward Bradley of Detroit was arraigned Friday on charges of carjacking and assault with intent to do great bodily harm.

A judge entered a plea of not guilty on his behalf. Court officials said Monday that Bradley did not have a lawyer. "Is there really any reason to beat a 91-year-old just to take his car?" Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said in a statement. "Carjacking is bad enough, but there was absolutely no reason for him to brutalize one of our senior citizens to accomplish his criminal goal."

A bruised Sims told WDIV-TV that his attacker was of "very low character." "If he wanted the car, he could have grabbed the keys and taken off," Sims said. An evidentiary hearing is set for next week.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)