Atlanta police are investigating a violent robbery that occurred in Midtown last week in which an unidentified assailant pistol-whipped one gay man, sending him to the hospital with facial lacerations.
Mamdouh Shawky, 28, and a friend had left the Caribou Coffee at 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue and were walking down Argonne Avenue on the way to the Atlanta Eagle around 11 p.m. on June 9 when they were confronted by two men.
“This one guy came behind us and came really close holding his gun and then another guy came around the front of us and then they just asked us to give them everything,” Shawky tells Georgia Voice.
Shawky says he gave them his wallet and phone but that’s when things got worse.
“The guy that came in the front started hitting my friend and then the other one behind my back, he came with his gun and put it near my face,” he says. “After that he hit me in my face, in my eyebrow.”
The suspects fled and the victims went to a nearby house for help, where neighbors called 911. The two went to Grady Hospital, where Shawky received stitches for a facial laceration caused by the suspect pistol-whipping him. The other suspect, whom Georgia Voice has reached out to for comment, had a laceration to the back of his head. Both were treated and released the next morning.
Shawky, who confirmed he is gay, says there was no indication the crime was motivated by his sexual orientation. The experience has left him second-guessing himself.
“I don’t know why I didn’t just take an Uber or something. Argonne Avenue is not very safe obviously,” he says, adding, “I go out in Midtown a lot and yeah, I would not walk again in Midtown or anywhere for that matter. It’s not a good experience.”