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Witnesses recount violent Mandeville encounter

“It really doesn’t seem like anything that serious happened until he made it serious,” said Morales.

What Mandeville Police say was a disturbance call Monday, was caught on cell phone video and spread on social media.   

“I just saw this man screaming. At the point that I started watching he was at this lady’s window just screaming at her,” said Leanna Morales who saw it happen.  

Witnesses say a lady in a silver truck was attempting to back out of a parking spot, getting close to a parked white van that was not in a parking spot. That’s when witnesses say a man in the van, who police identify as Richard Suarez, got out and walked up to woman who was in her truck. 

“This man seemed so upset, like so angry,” said Morales.  

It happened in the parking lot of a shopping center on Highway 190, where Morales works.  

“It doesn’t seem like anything really happened to him to make him that upset,” said Morales. 

You can hear people in the cell phone video tell the man to leave the lady alone, but things only get worse. An older man makes comments, which leads to an exchange between both men. Both then disappear behind that white van before the sound of what appears to be a hit.   

“Completely just one hit, just fall on the ground. He didn’t get up for about 20 minutes,” said Morales.  

From where Morales was standing, she says she saw it happen. She says it was one punch to the head.  

“I was all the way in the corner right here and his car was blocking it in the video, but he actually just hit him only once and he fell on the ground,” said Morales.  

Witnesses say the man who was hit was sitting up and responsive when first responders got there. He was then taken to the hospital. Police say Suarez left the scene, leading to warrants for his arrest.  

“It really doesn’t seem like anything that serious happened until he made it serious,” said Morales.  

Mandeville Police say Suarez faces charges of second-degree battery, simple assault and disturbing the peace as of Monday evening, Suarez had not been arrested. 

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