Police looking to identify persons of interest in violent assault on Metro Red Line train

- Metro Transit Police have released surveillance images of six persons of interest sought as part of an aggravated assault investigation on a Red Line train in December.

According to police, a group of juveniles attacked a man onboard a Metro train in the area of the NoMa–Gallaudet U station on Dec. 21 at around 5 p.m.

Metro said the violent attack was not captured on video.

The violent assault stemmed from an apparent attempted robbery of a book bag, according to Metro.

The victim was hospitalized and suffered non-life-threatening injuries, Metro said. A person who wrote on a neighborhood listserv described the victim as being knocked out during the assault and possibly suffered a broken jaw.

FOX 5 confirmed three juveniles were detained as they got off the train, but Metro Transit Police could not identify them as the attackers.

The new images comes after FOX 5 requested the transit agency to release surveillance video and images related to the violent assault for the past two weeks. Metro declined our initial request on the day after the attack and said in a statement on Dec. 22 by Metro spokesperson Dan Stessel:

“Beyond the fact that the suspect(s) in this case are described by witnesses and victim as being juveniles, it is not uncommon for detectives to withhold images/video until other investigative measures are exhausted. The reason for this is that it helps to preserve the integrity of an eventual ID by the victim. For example: Let's say we were to release images of suspects in this case and they are broadcast widely in the media. That could influence the victim's recollection of the suspect, thereby calling into question the validity of a photo array.  Our goal here is to ensure that the eventual charges stick and that those responsible are successfully prosecuted. As I told Matt, we have had great success in the past identifying juveniles through school resource officers.”

Anyone who has any information about the assault or are able to identify any of the persons of interest are asked to call Metro Transit Police at 202-962-2121 and reference case #2015-61461. Tips also can be sent by text message to "MyMTPD" (696873).

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