PD: Suspect assaults mentally-challenged man in theft attempt at West Phoenix park

Posted at 1:51 PM, Sep 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-16 23:46:22-04

A suspect is facing attempted robbery charges after assaulting a mentally-challenged man near a Phoenix park and trying to steal the man's bicycle.

Phoenix Police report that on Sunday, 25-year-old Anthony Kevin Fowlkes tried to take a Mongoose 21-speed mountain bike from the man who was riding it at Willow Park, near 27th Avenue and Polk Street.

When the victim refused to give up the bike, Fowlkes allegedly punched him in the face and head several times.

Fowlkes ran from the area when he was unsuccessful in getting the bike. 

Neighbors and family members advised police that the victim is in special needs classes and unable to defend himself. Police say that the victim's eye was bruised and nearly swollen shut after the altercation.

Police say Fowlkes changed clothes, but they found him in the area after a police canine search. 

Fowlkes reportedly told police that the bicycle belonged to a friend of his and was stolen from him after his friend let him ride it. Fowlkes told police that he did not call them to report the crime because "police are criminals and don't help people." 

He also reportedly told police that he, "was just acting in self-defense and should not get into trouble because he is a good fighter and the other person is not."

Police say Fowlkes also had an outstanding warrant for his arrest.

He's been charged with attempted robbery.