Jogger surprised by attack reaction

Johannesburg - A Pretoria jogger who was allegedly beaten up by six men early on Friday morning is perplexed by the attention he has received after the attack.

A reporter spoke to Wilfred Hurwitz briefly. “I am just an ordinary guy,” he said.

Hurwitz, a tattoo artist, told the police that a bakkie with six men drove past him in Brooklyn in the early hours of the morning while he was out jogging.

According to police spokeswoman Lieutenant Linda Jerling, the men drove past Hurwitz and turned around when they saw him.

The bakkie’s lights were turned off when it turned around.

Hurwitz said the men then assaulted him, allegedly because of his tattoos. Eighty percent of his body is covered with tattoos, including half his face.

Eyewitness News reported that Hurwitz suffered concussion, lost several teeth and had his nose broken. Jerling was unable to confirm which hospital he was taken to.

Hurwitz doesn’t remember being taken to hospital. “He said he just remembers the men coming towards him on the bakkie and then waking up in hospital.”

Erin Phipps, manager of Tattoo Tony, a tattoo parlour in Hatfield, said she had never heard of anyone being assaulted because of their tattoos. “It’s really horrible, I hope Wilfred is okay,” she said.

She said the tattoo community stick together because of the nature of their work.

“There are many students in Hatfield and they usually seem to think tattoos are cool. I don’t know how this happened,” she added.

A case of assault was opened at the Brooklyn police station.