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Cops: ‘Knockout’ attacker nabbed

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Cops busted a 35-year-old Brownsville man suspected in a string of ambush attacks across Brooklyn that were supposedly part of the so-called “knockout game.”

The suspect, Barry Baldwin, has been charged with allegedly cold-cocking five women — two of whom were over 70-years old — across three Brooklyn police precincts, according to a spokesman for District Attorney Ken Thompson.

The 35-year-old tough guy, who would allegedly creep up behind his female victims before punching them in the back of the head, is also the main suspect in two additional attack attempts — one of which was a pathetic whiff.

But the city is prosecuting Baldwin only for attacks in which he was allegedly able to make contact and actually physically harm a woman, according a complaint report obtained from the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office.

The first attack attributed to Baldwin occurred on Avenue L in Midwood on Nov. 9, when the suspect allegedly attacked a 78-year-old woman, according to a spokesman for the District Attorney.

The surprise attack occurred near E. Fifth Street at 2:45 pm, when Baldwin allegedly attacked the older woman from behind, striking her once in the back of the head before running away, cops said.

Subsequent attacks shared common traits with the first, according to court papers. During each incident, the suspect punched the victim in the face or the back of the head before fleeing on foot.

In addition to the Nov. 9th attack, District Attorney Thompson and the NYPD suspect Baldwin was responsible for these additional attacks:

• A 20-year-old woman told police that she was attacked on Avenue M near Mcdonald Avenue at 2:40 pm on Dec. 7, when the suspect snuck up behind her and struck her in the back of her head.

• A 33-year-old woman told police she was with her 7-year-old on Elm Street near E. 12th Street at 2:45 pm on Dec. 21, when the suspect struck her in the back of the head, sending her sprawling onto her daughter.

• A 71-year-old woman told police she was on Seaview Avenue bench near 93rd Street at 11:45 am on Dec. 24, when the suspect punched her in the face.

• A 35-year-old woman told police that she was on Skidmore Avenue between E. 92nd and E. 93rd streets at 12:50 pm on Dec. 27, when the suspect slugged her in the face as she spoke on her cellphone.

Several groups, including the Flatbush Jewish Community Coalition, and local elected officials are offering thousands in rewards for information leading to the conviction of anyone for the spree of surprise assaults, which many consider a part of the “knockout” game.

According to the NYPD, however, Baldwin was nabbed thanks to good old fashioned police work.

Members of the NYPD’s Hate Crime Task Force were in the vicinity where several of the attacks had taken place, when an officer spotted a man fitting the attacker’s description, according to police.

The officers took Baldwin into custody, and he was charged after allegedly making statements incriminating himself, cops said.

Attempts to reach Baldwin’s public defender were not successful.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4514.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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