A man who ended up in the hospital after being attacked by a group of young people downtown is reaching out for help locating the assailants.
Ryan Bloomfield, 40, and his girlfriend Angie Surina were walking home from a barbecue at Surina’s father’s house between 11:30 p.m. and midnight on June 13 around the 300 block of Eckhardt Avenue when the two briefly separated after an argument.
“I turned to walk away from her to give ourselves a bit of time to cool off and within seconds I heard people around her,” Bloomfield said. “There was a large group of people there around Angie, so I started to walk back and two of the men broke away from the group and started walking towards me, threatening me.”
The two say there was a group of around five-to-10 young-looking individuals who approached Surina.
“I remember them just saying ‘are you OK, are you OK’ and my understanding is because we were raising our voices, they thought there was something else going on,” Surina said.
“I mean, heck, maybe that was there sole intention, making sure I was OK, but from our standpoint there is a way of dealing with things, and a way of not dealing with things,” Surina said.
Bloomfield, who ended up in hospital with a large wound to the forehead which required six stitches, as well as cuts and abrasions on his hands, knees and his left elbow, which also received six stitches, said that the group seemed initially concerned for Surina’s safety.
“I have a funny feeling that they were coming to Angie’s rescue because her and I were arguing. But speaking for myself, if I were to hear a situation like that I obviously would go out and check to see if nothing was going on — but I wouldn’t have taken the action that they did,” he said. “It’s all well and good to see if people are safe, but, for lack of a better term, to take the law into your own hands, it’s unacceptable,” Bloomfield said.
Those intentions turned sour according to Surina.
“All of a sudden all these kids were surrounding me and they wouldn’t let me get to Ryan. I was trying to get to him because I couldn’t hear him. I remember one of the guys pushing me to the ground. When I made my way over I couldn’t see him, there was a group of them surrounding him and it looked like they were kicking him,” Surina said.
She said one of the young girls in the group pleaded with the others to stop and the group dispersed. When she eventually made it over to Bloomfield, Surina called out for her sister, with her dad’s house only a block or two away.
“He was lying there just like motionless. Just lying there on the ground. There was this big pool of blood by his head. I didn’t know what to do, I just said ‘honey, honey are you OK?’” Surina said.
Bloomfield doesn’t remember much after the initial altercation.
“I just sort of walked past them trying to get to Angie. As far as I know, one of them punched me in the back of the head, knocked me to the ground, the next thing I really remember was waking up in Angie’s dad’s bathroom washing the blood off my face,” Bloomfield said.
“I really want them caught,” Bloomfield said.
He has lived in Penticton since 1980 and said he’s never experienced anything like this.
“Everyone’s run into having altercations and having arguments with strangers on the street but never anything to this degree. I’ve never been hit from behind and ended up hospitalized because of it,” Bloomfield said.
RCMP did not respond to several requests for information from the Penticton Western News by press deadline.