Disturbing Video: No One Helps Man Knocked Out Then Run Over In River North [Graphic]
By Emma G. Gallegos in News on Apr 21, 2016 5:04PM
Marques Gaines (GoFundMe)
Marques Gaines, 32, died on Feb. 7 shortly after being knocked out cold, robbed, left in the street and then run over by a taxi cab outside a 7-Eleven on State Street. Surveillance video shows how quickly the situation escalated—and how little bystanders did to help out Gaines.
"NO ONE HELPED HIM!" writes his family in Georgia in a GoFundMe post to raise money for expenses around his death, including traveling to Chicago. "He was just in the street and everyone turned their backs and allowed him to be pummeled. We must wake up and help one another."
Gaines went into the convenience store to buy chips at around 4:20 a.m. after a night out with coworkers at the nearby Mother Hubbard's Sports Pub, according to the Tribune. The video shows that as he exits, he is faced with an unruly man who had just been ejected from the 7-Eleven, according to a suit filed by Gaines' family. The unruly man starts a verbal confrontation with Gaines and then the security guard.
As Gaines tried to extricate himself from the situation, the man who had just been ejected ran after him and clocked him. Video shows that the blow left Gaines out cold in the street.
The assailant fled, but some other people from across the street ran over and took Gaines' debit card and cell phone, the Gaines family's attorney Christopher T. Hurley told Chicagoist. An employee inside the 7-Eleven called 9-1-1 and described Gaines as bloodied but breathing.
But no one—not the employee inside, nor the security guard, nor bystanders on the street—helped Gaines in any way or protected his body from oncoming traffic.
"After he’s robbed, everyone just walks away. Where's the security guard? Why isn't he helping?" Hurley told Chicagoist.
One taxi cab slowly skirted around Gaines' body, but another one ran right over him. Gaines remained pinned under the cab for three minutes, the lawsuit says. He was rushed to a hospital where he was later pronounced dead.
Phyllis Nelson, who became Gaines' guardian after his parents died when he was 9 years old, hired Hurley, who filed a wrongful death lawsuit last month. The original complaint named the taxi driver Mehdi Seyftolooi and the company Globe Taxi Association. An amended complaint filed this week also targets 7-Eleven and the owners of the franchise. Hurley says that the suit targets 7-Eleven for not properly training or equipping its security guard to protect its customers.
The suit alleges that the security guard mishandled a situation involving a dangerous man who posed a threat to customers. Instead of calling 9-1-1 to report a threatening individual he "escalated the threat by yelling at the violent individual." Instead of assisting a customer in need the guard "watched as he lay in the street and was struck and killed by a cab."
So far no suspects have been arrested in the case, even though there is surveillance video and eyewitnesses. Hurley says that police haven't been helpful in updating he and the family in the case. "Police haven't told us why."
Chicago police said in an email statement that no one is in custody in relation to Gaines' case, but that the investigation is ongoing and they're awaiting the return of evidence results.
Phyllis Nelson's daughter Drexina Nelson told the Tribune that she wants to see the assailant charged with murder. And the fact that Gaines could have been saved after he was assaulted weighs on her. "Who leaves a person in the street for that long? That's devastating to me —the fact that he could have been saved. He could still be here with us."
Shortly after the incident, a security worker at Mother Hubbard's Sports Pub named Gerry told DNAInfo that police hadn't been very helpful in cracking down on violent crime: "There's been so many robberies on this strip late at night, and the police haven't been doing anything about it."
Marques Gaines (GoFundMe)
The original police report says there was a two-sided fight between Gaines and his assailant, but one of his hometown friends from Georgia Rachel Hogan told DNAInfo that was out of character: "The maddest I've ever seen him was at a wedding when I didn't know all the words to 'Trap Queen.'"
The surveillance video backs that up.
Gaines was a bartender at the Chicago Marriott Hotel on Michigan Avenue, and Rudy Coronel, one of his coworkers of five years told DNAInfo he always looked forward to working with Gaines, "There was just never a dull day with Marques — even on our bad days, he would find a way to make it fun. He could get along with anybody, make anybody laugh. He was just that kind of guy, so full of life."