PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The family of a man who is now paralyzed following a fight with several women outside a McDonald’s downtown is not sure if he will ever walk again.
Pittsburgh Police say they received calls about a man in the street who had been punched unconscious and a female who had been pepper-sprayed outside the McDonald’s on Wood Street around 10:15 p.m. Monday night.
KDKA’s Lindsay Ward Reports:
Police say surveillance video shows an argument staring with an unknown male and the man and woman inside the McDonald’s.
The argument spilled outside, and that is when the man was knocked unconscious.
The man, 62-year-old Marc Conn, is fighting to walk again at Allegheny General Hospital after undergoing a five-hour surgery on his spine.
His family said he could not speak because his vocal cords were crushed, along with one side of his face.
“All I saw in the video is him fall face first and he looked like he was dead,” said family member Jen Belajac. “He wasn’t moving.”
Belajac, the cousin of Conn, said the family found out Conn was assaulted after a video circulated on Facebook.
“I called (his sister) and she’s crying, she’s trying to call him, she’s freaking out,” Belajac said.
Belajac said Conn, of the South Hills, was with his longtime girlfriend Billie Jo Goldsworthy and their dog when the assault happened.
They were headed to the Greyhound bus station when they were attacked, Belajac said.
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“Couple kids started throwing pop bottles,” Beljac said. “They threw them on his girlfriend’s head, so they went into the McDonald’s to get away.”
Once inside the McDonald’s on Wood Street, Belajac says things got worse.
According to a criminal complaint, a male followed them in and began arguing with Goldsworthy.
When Conn tried to pull his girlfriend away, police say two McDonald’s employees intervened — Roneese Davis and Kaniya Martin — and could be seen pushing and punching the woman.
Police say Conn punched back and the couple was then pushed by employees from the restaurant.
Police said Conn’s girlfriend continued to argue with employees and customers outside before she was pepper-sprayed, dragged to the ground by her hair and punched repeatedly.
The video shows Conn on the phone, and police say he was trying to call 911.
The criminal complaint states Conn sees Goldsworthy on the ground and attempts to assist her and is then struck from behind by Davis.
Video footage shows Davis punching Conn once into the back of the head, causing Conn to fall face-first onto the pavement.
“He was paralyzed from the neck down,” Belajac said. “He couldn’t feel nothing.”
Davis has been arrested on aggravated assault charges.
Police have not yet filed any charges against the second employee or anyone else involved.