A Winnipeg man is recovering in hospital after he was beaten unconscious and briefly set on fire.
No arrests have been made in the attack, which happened around 3:30 a.m. Saturday in the 100 block of Carriage Road. A resident called 911 after seeing at least six men swarm the helpless victim.
"It was traumatic. It was shocking. It was disturbing. They were like animals," the witness told the Free Press Monday. He doesn't want his name published out of concern for his safety.
Police confirmed the young adult suffered serious injuries, although they aren't life-threatening.
No other details have been released publicly, including a possible motive for the incident.
"I thought he was dead," said the resident.
He described the attackers as males in their late teens and said they seemed to be impaired at the time.
The incident began with the victim being surrounded and knocked to the ground. The attackers kicked his head and chest.
The witness immediately phoned for emergency help while watching from his window, afraid to go outside and confront the attackers.
"One kicked him in the head so hard his shoe went flying off," he said.
The victim offered no resistance and appeared to be knocked out, the witness said.
That's when at least one of the men set fire to the man's shirt as he lay on the ground.
"It was definitely on fire. One of the men then put it out," he said. The group appeared to be leaving, but a couple of men ran back to the victim and continued the assault.
"They dragged him behind a Dumpster and continued kicking him. Then another couple from the group came back and stopped those guys from continuing. Otherwise, they might have killed him," the witness said.
Police and paramedics arrived moments later to tend to the victim, who appeared to be regaining consciousness.
Police had their helicopter in the air searching for the suspects, who walked away from the scene. They were not located.