A D.C. man is still recovering from a vicious attack where he was grabbed from behind and slashed across the face.
The attack happened when the victim, Ben Fishel, who is the grandson of the late Andy Rooney, was on his way home near 11th and V Streets.
It happened in a thriving area of the District not too far from the 9:30 Club and Howard University Hospital.
The pictures of Fishel’s injuries are graphic, but they show the violence he experienced. He was slashed four times. One went through his cheek and happened seconds after he turned the key to his front door.
“I was choked from behind,” he said. “He had me in a headlock and he obviously was a large individual because he was pulling up on me. I couldn't breathe and he had a box cutter and he came across my chin, cut me pretty deep.”
Fishel believes he was followed from a Crown gas station after telling several young men he wouldn't buy them cigarettes. At first, he thought he was safe because he was walking with a group of people.
“As soon as I peeled off on my own to go to my house, apparently he was still with me,” Fishel said.
On Tuesday, D.C. police even showed him video from a security camera near his home.
“We saw from that footage that he did indeed follow me,” said Fishel.
Police have obtained video from the gas station as well. But Fishel said detectives have not been able to watch it all and told him Tuesday they needed to call in a video expert.
“They downloaded it in a certain format and they have technical issues,” he said. “It won't play in their computer. It crashes. We see the image that we are about to get and then the video crashes.”
Fishel told us the police response to his attack was fast. The detective assigned has been working hard on his case. But he worries too much time is passing and vital information could be released to the public sooner helping to catch his attacker and preventing others from being harmed.
“We walk home a lot,” said Fishel. “Sometimes we stay out late on a Saturday night. It never was a concern of mine and I would just tell folks they should be a little more mindful.”
It is important to point out that this was not a robbery. Fishel had his wallet and phone on him and they were not taken from him.
He believes it was simply a vicious attack.
On Tuesday afternoon, D.C. police said that their technical issue had been resolved. But they are not releasing the video because they don't believe it will aid in the investigation.
Anyone with information about this attack or the suspect is asked to call D.C. police at 202-727-9099.