$10,000 reward in parking attendant assault

Police say the 30-year-old Asrat Mamo was hit in the head with a brick during a robbery attempt Wednesday night at the E-Z Park parking lot at 1309 Locust Street. This picture is of Mulugeta posted on his Facebook page.

April 5, 2012 2:39:26 PM PDT
The police aren't quite sure what they're dealing with here. What they do know, is they've got a man seriously injured in the hospital after that brutal attack, and a lot of unanswered questions.

"We're not sure what that relationship is until we get a better interview with the actual parking lot attendant," said Philadelphia Police Lieutenant Ray Evers.

That attendant was slammed in the head with a brick Wednesday night. The assault occurred around 7:40 p.m. at the E-Z Park parking lot at 1309 Locust Street.

The surveillance video shows 30-year old Asrat Mamo sitting on a stool outside his booth as three people come and go. A woman goes into the booth and stays there for about 7 minutes, conversing with Mamo.

Another woman in a pink sweatsuit and a man approach Mamo and then leave.

The man comes back and hits Mamo on the side of the head with a brick. He and the woman in the booth leave with Mamo lying unconscious on the ground.

The three suspects then flag down an Old City Taxi cab and take off.

"Obviously the female that was in the booth, he had a conversation with that person for over seven minutes so there was some knowledge between the two," said Evers. "They knew each other in some way. The other two approached several times and there was a conversation between the group."

Robbery does not appear to be a motive. Mamo still had cash and his cell phone in his pocket. And there's no loose cash in the booth since it all goes into a safe the attendant has no access to.

Action News found a profile picture from Mamo's Facebook page. His friends say he left his home in Ethiopia looking for opportunity in America.

"He's a nice guy," said friend Teshome Alemu. "He's been living in this country almost five years."

Mamo is hospitalized in serious condition. Many of his friends are also parking attendants who say they will now lock themselves inside.

"I'm scared, I'm afraid," said Alemu, adding that he's going to watch his own back now. "I'm going to sit in the booth."

One suspect is described as a black male in his 30s around 250 pounds with dreadlocks, wearing a black jacket. The woman is described as a black female with a tall thin build, short hair, wearing a green dress. Witnesses say there was a third individual involved, although no description is available.

The company that owns the lot, E-Z Park, is putting up a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the attackers. That money can be claimed with a tip to the Citizen's Crime Commission at 215-546-TIPS.