Man charged with beating of homeless man on Monroe Avenue

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Rochester police have identified 19-year-old Ethan Carrion as the man who beat a homeless man on Monroe Avenue in early August, which was captured in a viral video.

Carrion was charged with assault and taken to Monroe County Jail. He was arraigned on Thursday morning in Rochester City Court and released on his own recognizance. He is due back in court on Sept. 14.

Ethan Carrion, according to a witness, was an assistant manager at the Dollar General store on Monroe Avenue when he saw the victim in the parking lot. He told the witness that the victim, a homeless man, was not allowed on the property because he had previously stolen from the store.

Carrion is then accused of chasing the man out of the Dollar General parking lot, across the street and beating him on the sidewalk in front of the Walgreens parking lot. 

The Rochester Police Department said community members helped to identify both the victim and the suspect in the video. RPD officers took the 19-year-old into custody on Wednesday afternoon on Portland Avenue.

In statements to police, the victim said he was walking through the parking lot at Dollar General and he doesn’t remember much of the attack against him. He said the suspect had previously tried chasing him away with his car.

According to Rochester Police, Carrion never returned to work at the Dollar General after video of the attack went viral. 

“It took a little bit to get the suspect into custody, “ says Lt. Greg Bello. “He was clearly evading us so we had to work toward getting him in custody and finally yesterday afternoon we were able to thankfully take him into custody.”

Outreach groups that work with the homeless have been in contact with the victim. In the days following the beating, they found him with two black eyes and a head injury.

“He is still on the streets,” explains Nicholas Coulter of Person Centered Housing Options. “He is challenging to engage and I think that makes it a little harder for us to follow up. We do know some folks have gone out to him to make sure he’s doing OK and he is healthy and well.”

Coulter says in the meantime, PCHO and other groups are working with businesses in the Monroe Avenue area who have been dealing with an increase in homeless people stealing from their stores, 

“We are working with businesses to create care packages, work with our outreach team to give those out or just have them on-site at the businesses that they work in so, we’re looking for creative ways to curb those issues,” he says.

Ethan Carrion is due back in court on Sept. 14.