Elderly victim waved to attackers before Forbidden Drive assault

John Arnold was biking along Forbidden Drive in Wissahickon Valley Park Monday at 1 p.m. when he found an 84-year-old man whose face was covered in blood.

“He turned his face and had blood all over the right side of his face, and he had loose skin,” Arnold said. “He looked like he was busted above his right eye and he would need stitches.”

Philadelphia police say the elderly man was assaulted by four males at 6900 Forbidden Drive. According to Arnold, the attack took place just northwest of the Green Lane entrance to the path in Wissahickon Valley Park.

Just moments before discovering the victim, Arnold rode past four men whose gaze met the floor when they saw him. Arnold says he has been mistaken for a cop before because of his aviator sunglasses and black and white attire.

“I got the impression it was a father and three sons. One of them was considerably bigger…looked older,” he said. 

Police say the four suspects were described as four black males, approximately 17-20 years old. Arnold called 911 to inform police he saw four males heading south on Lincoln Drive.

The victim told Arnold he had waved to the group, as he usually does to all passersby on the trail, before they attacked him.

According to Arnold, the victim said he fell after being hit in the face and was kicked on the ground.

The victim was sent to Chestnut Hill Hospital where he was treated for a laceration above his right eye. Arnold said a woman who found the victim before him, alleged that some of the suspects were wearing La Salle University sweatshirts.

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