Police are on the hunt for a man who mugged an OU student in northwest Oklahoma City. It happened outside of a gay bar where the student was working on a school project.
The student was taking pictures of the Phoenix Rising bar for a project on gay pride when he was robbed of his camera. However, he doesn't believe it was part of hate crime, just a crime of opportunity.
“Make sure you're aware of who's around you,” said Gabe Stilwell, an OU student mugged last week in Oklahoma City.
Stilwell said he learned that lesson the hard way.
“A guy came up and started talking to me about the bar, asked me some questions about it and went inside,” Stilwell remembered.
The journalism student stopped outside the bar near NW 39th Street and Barnes to snap a few photos for his final project.
“He came back out and said 'I don't think this is the bar for me,'” Stilwell said.
That's when Stilwell thought the interchange ended, but surveillance video released by the Oklahoma City Police Department captured what happened next.
“He turned around and started punching me and grabbing my camera,” he said. “Then he said, ‘if you don't let go I’m going to shoot you,’ so I just kind of let go.”
He watched the man take off on foot with his camera, before he got tripped up a few feet away.
“After he got the camera from me, he ran off in this direction stumbled and I guess tripped probably over the curb right here, fell with the camera under him and it shattered,” he said.
Stilwell said he saw pieces of his Nikon D7100 fly all over the pavement.
“You shouldn't be out on the street, walking, minding your own business and getting attacked by someone you don't know over a camera that he can't even do anything with because he broke it,” Stilwell said. “I just hope he gets arrested and I hope he doesn't have the chance to do this to anyone else.”
Stilwell got an extension on his project. Meanwhile, police are still looking for the suspect. If you have any information about this crime call Crime Stoppers at (405) 235-7300.