Road worker recuperating after driver attacked him

Police seek public's help in finding assailant who was angry about delay

March 30, 2001|By Laura Barnhardt | Laura Barnhardt,SUN STAFF

Kerry Shaw has been working on roads for 30 years. Motorists honk their horns, make nasty gestures and occasionally shout an obscenity or two.

Shaw doesn't expect anyone to thank him. But he never thought someone would get out and beat him because construction snarled traffic. "I'm still in shock," said Shaw, more than a week after a motorist viciously attacked him in Annapolis.

The driver, who apparently was upset about traffic congestion at the intersection of Bay Ridge and Edgewater roads, got out of his truck about 3:30 p.m. March 22 and punched Shaw, according to Shaw and police.

When the 48-year-old construction foreman fell to the ground, his attacker kicked him repeatedly in the face and minutes later got back into his vehicle and fled.

Annapolis detectives are asking for the public's help to locate the driver of the black Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck who they say assaulted Shaw. He is described as a black man, about 6 feet tall, weighing about 195 pounds, and he might have a gold tooth.

Police said he might have been injured during the incident. Shaw thinks he might have scratched his attacker's ear trying to defend himself.

"A lot of times, people think we have all the information," said Detective Cpl. Jim Doran. "But we could use some help on this one."

Shaw said he will have to undergo extensive surgery to repair his broken bones and severe facial lacerations. He may have to have surgery on his eye.

"My vision is blurred," Shaw said from his home in Essex yesterday. "I was laying there bleeding. I had a broken nose, broken eye socket. A broken bone was blocking my air passage. My mouth is busted. A few teeth got knocked out."

Doctors are waiting for the swelling to subside before they can schedule surgery, Shaw said.

"This is a crazy world," he said. "You never think it's going to happen to you."

Shaw had gotten used to the daily indignities of his work. "You get cussed out. People intentionally try to drive you off the road. You see the famous international sign language."

But the road was blocked for a only few minutes March 22 where Shaw and his crew were repairing a sewer line at about 3:30 p.m. Shaw's assailant was in line about 10 cars from the flagman.

"He whipped out of line and came charging at me," Shaw said. "I stood my ground. We had big equipment blocking the road. He couldn't go anywhere. Then, the guy got out and started swinging. He conked me on the head with something and kicked me a half-dozen times. ... Afterward, he got back his pickup truck, rolled down his window and yelled he was coming back to kill us all."

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call Annapolis detectives at 410-349-0217.

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