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4:09 AM Thu, Dec. 13th

Suspects chose random victim in beating attack

Robert Joseph Mawhinney Jr.

Robert Joseph Mawhinney Jr.

KINGMAN - A man severely beaten by two others last week was a random victim and had not been drinking in the same bar as the men as originally reported by police, witnesses say.

The victim's sister, Billy Botschka, said her 32-year-old mentally challenged brother was on his way to the store and was randomly targeted by the men. That was confirmed by BJ's Cabana Bar Manager Mary Gibson, who said that the victim wasn't in her bar on the night of Sept. 4.

Gibson said the two suspects, 51-year-old Robert Joseph Mawhinney Jr. and a second man, were making trouble at her bar and got into a dispute with another party there.

"They were trying to start trouble with anybody that looked their direction," she said.

She said both parties were separated and asked to leave one party at a time, per bar procedure. The third man was put in a cab. After he was off the property, the two suspects were allowed to leave in their cars because they did not appear intoxicated, she said.

Gibson added that she did not personally see the victim that night, but said that her security guard had to intervene when the suspects began harassing him as he walked by in front of the bar.

After the men drove away, they saw the victim near the old Ashley Furniture building, pulled their vehicles over, and began beating him, according to police.

Botschka said her brother has Attention Deficit Disorder and was headed to a 24-hour store despite the late hour when he was attacked. He spent four days in a Las Vegas hospital and suffered a black eye, swollen face and a broken jaw. His jaw is now wired shut and he has to eat through a straw, she added.

She was angry that the initial report from police made it sound like her brother antagonized the two suspects when in fact he had never seen them before he was attacked.

Capt. Rusty Cooper said the statements in the original report came from Mawhinney. The second suspect has been identified by police but has not yet been arrested.