A black NHS worker has been left with horrific facial injuries after he was hit by a car in what police believe to be a racially aggravated assault.
The 21-year-old man, who has not been named, suffered a broken leg, nose and cheekbone after he was struck by a car in the Southmead area of Bristol at around 4.30pm on July 22.
Following the brutal assault, photos of the unnamed man have been posted online by people claiming to be his friends in an effort to warn others.
Avon and Somerset Police are treating the incident as ‘racially aggravated’ and have appealed for any witnesses to come forward.
A 21-year-old man suffered a broken leg, nose and cheekbone after he was hit by a car in the Southmead area of Bristol at on July 22
In a statement issued through the force, the victim, who works at Southmead Hospital, said he wanted people to ‘be aware’ of what had happened.
The man said: ‘I have six months recovery ahead of me, minimum.
‘I have a broken leg, nose and cheekbone, will need plastic surgery to my face and leg and am walking on crutches.
‘I don’t want this to happen to anyone else, I want people to be aware.’
The man, who has been affected both mentally and physically by the assault, was taken to hospital immediately after the incident and was discharged the following day.
He added: ‘I don’t feel safe to walk outside and I can’t play football, record my music, go to the gym or even sleep – I have to try to sleep sitting up.
‘I really want to thank all the people who were there to help me – the people who were there when it happened, colleagues at the NHS for their love and support, the witnesses who have come forward, and Sari (Stand Against Racism & Inequality charity) as well as the police for their hard work.’
He asked for people to respect his family’s privacy during the ‘really difficult time’ and asked for contact to be made through Sari.
‘We will bounce back as a family, this will make us stronger. We won’t let the haters win,’ he added.
Police were called to a report of a collision involving a car and a pedestrian at 4.30pm on Wednesday.
The man said he wanted people to ‘be aware’ of what had happened and thanked those who had helped him
Following the attack, a friend of the man, Ronald Tatenda Muchenje, shared a post on social media
Following the attack, a friend of the young man, Ronald Tatenda Muchenje, alleged that the suspects called the victim a f****ing n*****’ after they ran from the car.
In a post on social media Mr Muchenje wrote: ‘The perpetrators could be heard screaming f****** n*****’ by at least 15 eyewitnesses as they ditched the car running off leaving him to fight for his life.
‘This is the fight we are fighting when we say #blacklivesmatter #BLM #timeforchange, not for any Marxist movement but for our sons and daughters, so for anyone who feels to tell me all lives matter please don’t bother ever talking to me as you’re missing the point of all this.’
Meanwhile the man’s local football team DRG SV Frenchay, who described him as a member of the team named ‘K-dog’, wrote online: ‘This is absolutely sicking what has happened to one of our players.
‘Genuinely one of the nicest guys at the club and that I have ever met. On be half of everyone one at the club we wish you a speedy recovery k-dog.’
Officers have interviewed the victim, carried out house-to-house inquiries and examined CCTV footage. They have taken more than a dozen witness statements as part of their investigation.
Andrea Young, chief executive of North Bristol NHS Trust, said she was ‘incredibly saddened’ to hear of the attack.
She said: ‘The police believe this to have been a racially aggravated attack and we are horrified that this is something that has happened to one of our friends and colleagues.
‘Racism, in any form, has no place in our society and that an attack such as this can happen is shocking.’
She encouraged anyone with information to contact police.
Meanwhile Asher Craig, deputy mayor of Bristol, said the attack went against the values of the city.
He added: ‘The attack against a young man, walking home from his job where he serves the community, is appalling and sickening.
‘We stand in solidarity with this citizen and condemn the abhorrent behaviour of the perpetrators.
‘No one in Bristol, or anywhere in the world, should be subject to race hate crime and violence and we will do all we can to drive out this behaviour in our city.
‘We appeal to anyone who witnessed the attack, or knows who the perpetrators are, to contact the police and assist with their ongoing inquiries.’
Speaking at Southmead police station on Tuesday, Inspector Lorna Dallimore said that the collision was believed to be ‘a deliberate act’.
She said: ‘The individual was left with some very serious injuries, however it could have been far more serious and potentially resulted in a fatality.
‘As a result of that, from the outset we’ve treated this incident very seriously.
‘There’s a dedicated investigation team that has been appointed and has been working painstakingly over the past six days to pursue lines of inquiry.
‘We do believe that the incident had a racial element to it and that’s as a result of words that were used post-incident.
‘It is being treated and investigated as racially-aggravated assault.’
She described the incident as ‘extremely rare’ and asked members of the community to contact police if they had concerns around racial hatred.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the force online or by phoning 101, quoting reference number 5220163308.
They can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.