Police: Videotaped Baltimore beating not hate crime

WASHINGTON – The beating of a man that was videotaped by onlookers who did nothing to stop it in downtown Baltimore will not be investigated as a hate crime, according to police.

Baltimore police say they’re looking for suspects in the beating, but no arrests have been made. The victim has not been identified, but police say he’s from Arlington, Va.

A video of the beating shows a white man getting punched in the face, with his head slamming against the pavement. He’s then robbed and stripped of his clothes. The suspects who attacked him are African American.

(Ed. Note: This video contains graphic material. Viewer discretion is advised. Video courtesy YouTube user PhoenixLark)

Baltimore County Police Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld, speaking on WBAL Radio Tuesday, said he doesn’t think the video depicts a hate crime, but that it is stoking “fear-mongering” and “race-baiting.” He said the case indicates “drunken opportunistic criminality.”

The victim in the video appears to be disoriented, when he gets punched.

The Baltimore Sun reports police are examining additional surveillance video as they investigate the incident. Also, a possible suspect reportedly discussed the incident on Twitter and Facebook before shutting down his accounts.

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