WASHINGTON — A 27-year-old Texas man was arrested by federal authorities on Thursday for allegedly filming himself punching a 79-year-old African-American man and breaking his jaw. Authorities say the assailant was attempting to see whether a “knockout” attack on a black victim would be nationally televised.
Conrad Alvin Barrett was arrested and accused of punching the unnamed victim last month and filming the assault. Barrett allegedly showed the video to a man outside a restaurant who he didn’t realize was an off-duty investigator. In the video, the attacker approaches the elderly African-American man, asks him “How’s it going, man?” and proceeds to punch him before laughing, saying “knockout” and fleeing in a vehicle. Barett has been charged with a hate crime.
According to the federal complaint, in another video found on his cell phone, Barrett allegedly says that African-Americans “haven’t fully experienced the blessing of evolution” and uses the n-word. The complaint alleges Barrett said he had been trying to get up the “courage” to play the knockout game for a week.
The “knockout game,” in which an assailant attempts to knock out a victim with one punch, has received a lot of press recently, though similar attacks have dated back as far as 1992, according to the complaint.
Barrett will appear in court on today. He faces a maximum of 10 years and a $250,000 fine if convicted.