June 11, 2018
This is why you should never try to break up a fight you are not involved in unless one of the people fighting is your family or a close friend.
It’s none of your business and you’ll probably just end up getting hit with a bag full of several pounds of steel.
A good Samaritan who tried to break up a fight in Washington Square Park became a victim himself when the one combatant walloped him with a bag filled with lug nuts, he said.
James Key, 41, had just finished visiting his father in a rehab facility Saturday evening and was walking through the Greenwich Village park when he came across the scuffle.
“As I came closer to the scene, it was obvious one person was clearly getting the better of the altercation and beating another man up very seriously with his fist,” Key said. “There were some women screaming, and they were obviously distraught, and I decided if could keep someone from getting hurt, maybe I should do that.”
The attacker — who cops identified as Roland Pacheco, 50 — repeatedly screamed “f—-t” at his victim, Key recalled.
“So I pulled [Pacheco] away from the other guy, pulled him by the shoulders…and then I stood between them so he couldn’t attack the guy anymore, and then I just asked him, ‘Why are you doing that? What did that guy do to you?’ His answer was to punch me in the face.”
Key immediately warned Pacheco that he was “going to jail today” and attempted to call 911 — but he attacker kept on swinging and punching. Suddenly — as dramatic video shows — Pacheco started swinging at him with an unusual weapon.
“He had…this big blue tarp and suddenly he started swinging at me,” Key said. “I put my left arm up to defend myself from the blows, [but] he hit my arm very hard….I thought it was rocks. I didn’t know it was steel.”
The beating rendered Key unable to call 911, so he yelled to the gathering crowd for help.
“I decided to try to disarm him to take the weapon away from him, trying to look for a good time between swings to try to grab it from him,” he said. “Eventually I was able to grab him by the head and neck, and then another bystander helped me wrestle him to the ground.”