A 27-year-old Bronx man who only leaves his home for sickle-cell blood transfusions was ruthlessly bashed in the head with a cobblestone in an apparently random attack as he headed home one day last week, his family and police say.
Franklyn Marte underwent brain surgery and needed 56 stitches to close the wounds he suffered in the June 9 attack near Brook Avenue in Mott Haven.
According to the NYPD, a man followed Marte for two blocks before putting on a mask and striking him in the back of the head with a cobblestone. The suspect then stomped on Marte's head and back before hitting him again with another rock.
A woman who later walked by the area saw Marte lying there and called 911. He was taken to Lincoln Hospital where he underwent surgery to repair the trauma.
Marte's parents and sister spoke to News 4 Wednesday afternoon as they pleaded for help finding the attacker. The man's mother's words were shrouded by her tears.
One sign of hope: Marte emerged from his medically induced coma and said "Mama" and gave her a kiss, the mother said in Spanish. He also asked for water.
Marte's sister said she tried to play detective in this case after hospital staff initially told her he may have gotten the injuries from a fall, tracking down surveillance video to determine what happened. Once she figured out where Franklyn was picked up by EMS, she pieced the rest together.
Now she and the rest of the family want justice.
"it was cruel the way he did it, didn't even let him defend himself," Yaniris Marte said. "My brother cannot eat, my brother cannot talk ... My brother's really a good boy, good man. He don't bother nobody. I'm scared for his life, I can't see my mom like this."
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).