FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne's NBC) - The family of a man who police say was beaten in the parking lot of the Apple Glen Walmart Saturday is seeking justice.
Fort Wanye's NBC News Anchor Tom Powell sat down with DeMarcus Walker's daughter Zai'qaria Walker Wednesday. She says her father is fighting to recover at an Indianapolis hospital. She says he's still unable to speak. "When it's your family it's a different kind of pain," she says. She has questions for the suspect. "Why that day? What was going through your head to do that then and there?"
Police arrested 21-year-old Levi Arnold who is charged with attempted murder, aggravated battery and resisting law enforcement in a vehicle. A witness tells Fort Wayne's NBC News he heard the suspect drive his car into the victim. He says he then saw the suspect get out of his car and beat the victim with a metal bat.
According to an affidavit surveillance footage from the store shows the car accelerating and swerving toward the victim. "The suspect is then seen getting out of the red Impala, and according to witnesses, starts to strike the vcitim several times with a metal baseball bat in the head."
Zai'qaria joined her father and several family members Wednesday for a news conference with Fort Wayne NAACP Legal Redress Committee Member Larry Gist. The group included Demarcus Walker's father Houston Walker. "I feel like it was a hate crime. It had to be. The way I understand in the paper, he was walking around Walmart with a ski mask on looking for people to beat up. That's how I feel about it," Walker told reporters during the news conference.
Gist says he's been in contact with the chief of police. "He's a fair man and I told him I have a special interest in this case because of the family," Gist says. A police spokesperson says detectives have not found concrete evidence of a hate crime, but they continue to investigate.
Zai'qaria Walker says her biggest priority right now is making sure her father recovers. "And then after that... justice and the right sentencing," she says.
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne's NBC) - Police said officers arrested a suspect connected to a battery incident at Walmart.
Officers identified the suspect as 21-year-old Levi Arnold from Bluffton, Indiana.
Police responded to the Apple Glen Walmart in Fort Wayne on Saturday morning.
Officers said witnesses told them a man struck another man with a car and hit him with a baseball bat.
Officers said the victim was left in critical condition.
Police said investigators and officers with the Bluffton Police Department found the suspect and arrested him.
Officers said the man was taken to the Allen County Jail and has been charged with attempted murder.
Stay with Fort Wayne's NBC News as we continue to follow this developing story.
Louie Tran is the weekend anchor for Fort Wayne’s NBC at 6 and 11pm and a weekday general assignment reporter. To share story ideas, please email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.