Blind man claims assault by neighbors - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Blind man claims assault by neighbors

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Dallas Garoutte Dallas Garoutte

Lubbock police are investigating the claims of a blind man who says he was assaulted by his neighbors early Sunday morning.

Assault charges are pending and Dallas Garoutte says he still fears for his life. Garoutte has been blind for nearly three years.

Garoutte says his neighbors were having a party next door while he was sitting outside in his front yard. That's when he says the college-age students got out of hand.

"A little girl ran down the sidewalk saying leave me alone. A man walked across my yard and stopped in the driveway screaming at her - telling her he wasn't through with her," Garoutte said. "I told him that she didn't want to be around him. He started yelling expletives at me and wanted to come and attack me."

He says his neighbors on the 2800 block of 66th Street knew about his disability but continued to threaten his life.

"He went over and got four more people from the party. They were talking about how they were going to mess me up. I kept telling them to remove themselves from my property and they wouldn't do that," Garoutte said.

That's when Garoutte says the situation escalated to an assault.

"I went to stand up and one of them threw a beer in my face. Another one punched me in the eye," Garoutte said.

Garoutte says he tried to defend himself with his walking stick, but that's the last he remembers. Garoutte said his two sons ages 14 and 17 were there to take the alleged assaulters off of him.

Police say they issued minor in possession tickets to the neighbors that night .

We knocked on the neighbors' door to get their side of the story, but they did not answer.

Garoutte says he is still being threatened and fears he could be assaulted again.

"If my sons weren't here they would have beat me to death," Garoutte said. "This is wrong."

Police say they have a suspect identified but cannot release the name.

The assault charge is a misdemeanor but could be upgraded to a felony as the investigation continues.

Copyright 2011 KCBD NewsChannel 11

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