HAYWARD -- A 70-year-old man was punched and lay unconscious at Kennedy Park last weekend, with the attack apparently witnessed and ignored by a large group of people nearby, police said.
About 6:45 p.m. Sunday, the man entered the park's pavilion picnic area at 19501 Hesperian Blvd. to collect recyclables, Sgt. Mark Ormsby said.
At the same time, in the northeast area of the park near the horseshoe pit, a group of 10-20 adults were using the picnic area, possibly celebrating a birthday, Ormsby said.
The man was approached by a female from the group and engaged him in conversation, according to police. Moments later, a male believed to be also from the group approached the elderly man and punched him in the head with enough force to cause him to fall to the ground and lose consciousness, Ormsby said.
"The group continued to engage in their activity while the victim lay unconscious on the ground, until he was located by his elderly wife about one hour later," Ormsby said. "No one associated with the suspect attempted to render aid or contact police or emergency medical personnel."
The victim was taken to a hospital, where he remained in critical condition on Thursday.
Police do not have a motive in the attack, and no arrests have been made.
Police said the suspect was last seen getting into a beige vehicle and driving away.
"The victim suffered significant brain trauma that will likely result in permanent brain damage," Ormsby said. As of Thursday, the victim had not regained consciousness.
Anyone with information about this case is asked to call police at 510-293-7000 or the anonymous tip line at 510-293-7197.
Contact Natalie Neysa Alund at 510-293-2469. Follow her at Twitter.com/nataliealund.