Mulcahey just got robbed and beaten with a metal cane in front of his house on Bergen Street between Classon and Grand coming home from work on Wednesday morning, about 2:30 AM:
As I approached, I realized that these were not my familiar neighborhood lushes (who are in their 40’s). These guys appeared to be in their early 20’s, or maybe late teens. As I walked past them, I noticed that one had a metal cane, which instantly raised my suspicions. Then, across the street, I saw two more guys, one wearing a face mask…
… one kid ran up behind me. “Don’t say anything,” he said, motioning with his hand in his coat pocket, “I’ve got a gun.”
“No you don’t,” I said, “Show it to me.”
He repeated his claim, but before I could continue, his friend ran up with the cane and started swinging. I tried to block/grab the cane and ended up throwing/falling with him into a car. “FUCK YOU!” I yelled. My strategy was to make as much noise as possible and fight them off long enough that they’d have to flee without getting my stuff. This was difficult, as the two guys from across the street had crossed over, and now I was trying to block the cane without leaving myself vulnerable to the other three.
We grappled on the sidewalk for a second, and made our way to my stoop, where I started yelling “This is my HOUSE!” repeatedly. Then Cane-o got a really good hit on me, and I went deaf for a second. I was still resisting, but when my hearing came back I heard Cane-o say, “Yo, this guy wants me to hit him AGAIN!” He said it in a shocked tone, as if there was something perplexing about this. I wondered what he knew that I didn’t, and sure enough, just as he said it, I felt blood running down my forehead. Like, a lot.
I backed into a corner and the others swarmed me and ran my pockets. They pulled out my wallet, phone, and less-interesting stuff. Cane-o kept shouting “Get his bag! Get his bag!” but I wouldn’t let them, using my body in the corner to block. They were fast and nervous, and after a couple seconds they gave up and ran. Cane-o looked at me, muttered “Shit” and took off after them.
I went inside and washed the blood off. I saw several lacerations to the top of my head. The NYPD knocked on my door a minute later and said they had received calls from neighbors in several buildings. They took my statement while an ambulance treated my wound and suggested I go to the ER. I took a cab over to 7th Ave ($7 vs. god-knows-what ambulances charge) and received a single staple to hold the wound together.
All told, this experience doesn’t seem very consequential. This sort of thing happens everyday in almost every neighborhood. It’s more a matter of statistics than location, and given the number of times my roommates and I have come home late over the past 5 years (we work odd hours), it’s kind of amazing that this never happened before. I still love my neighborhood and my block (though I wish it was closer to the train solely for ambulatory reasons). If anyone in the neighborhood feels threatened by a situation ahead of them, though, I suggest turning around and calling a cab. It probably would have saved me a trip to the ER.