Police: Suspect slugs random man in Eugene, like 'knockout game' - WNEM TV 5

Police: Suspect slugs random man in Eugene, similar to 'knockout game'

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Christopher Branham, booking photo Christopher Branham, booking photo
EUGENE, OR (KPTV) -

A man walking in downtown Eugene was punched by a stranger who proclaimed, "knockout," after sending the victim to the ground.

Police said it happened near the LTD bus station at 10th and Willamette at 1:30 p.m. Monday.

Investigators said transit district employees followed the suspect, later identified as Christopher Branham, 30. A Eugene police officer responded to the area, found Branham and eventually took him into custody.

Branham is accused of walking toward the 44-year-old victim, punching him several times in the face and body and then yelling, "knockout." Another man in the area came to the victim's defense.

Police said the situation is similar to reports of the "knockout game" in larger cities around the U.S., where victims are punched by random people, who are usually accompanied by others filming the attack.

Eugene police said, in this case, no one was filming Branham. However, because of what the suspect yelled, police said it's similar to the alarming trend.

While it's difficult to prevent a random attack, Eugene police still advise people to be aware of their surroundings and the people nearby, and to call 911 if you're in danger or being followed.

Branham is charged with harassment-physical molest and disorderly conduct.

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