Crime

Atwater police seek suspects in beating of 39-year-old man

ATWATER -- Police are searching for five men in the brutal beating of a 39-year-old man outside an apartment complex in the 1900 block of Atwater Boulevard.

The incident was reported around 1:15 p.m. Saturday. The victim was attacked by five men wielding baseball bats and other weapons, according to Detective Armando Echevarria, Atwater police spokesman.

Police believe the incident may have followed a verbal exchange between the victim and one of the attackers. After the argument, one person notified his friends, and the group either knew where the victim lived or followed him.

The victim is expected to survive, but was taken to a hospital in critical condition.

All of the assailants are believed to be white males and were seen inside a 1990s model Lincoln Town Car, possibly blue or black.

The first male had a shaved or bald head, 5-feet-9-inches tall, weighing 170 pounds. The second had a shaved or bald head, about 5-feet-8-inches tall, and wearing a long-sleeved black shirt with blue jeans. The third had a shaved or bald head, 5-feet-8-inches tall, weighing 110 pounds with a blue T-shirt or jersey, with a goatee or Fu Manchu-style beard and a tattoo extending up his right wrist.

The fourth had long blond hair, 5-feet-8-inches tall, weighing 180 pounds with a red long-sleeved shirt and shorts. A description of the fifth attacker wasn't available.

Atwater police are asking anyone with information to call Detective Echevarria at (209) 357-6395 or the department's automated tip line at (209) 357-6390. Calls are kept confidential, and you can remain anonymous.

Reporter Victor A. Patton can be reached at (209) 385-2431 or vpatton@mercedsun-star.com.

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