Blind man says he and his guide dog were attacked near his home - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Blind man says he and his guide dog were attacked near his home


A partially blind man claimed he was held him at knife point by a group of people and they nearly killed his guide dog in the Asylum Hill section of Hartford.

Francis Shannon said he relies on his dog, Lady, because he is suffering from neuropathy.

"She's very protective, but she's not a guard dog. She's not really a fighter," Shannon said.

Over the weekend, neither of them could foresee the brutal attack Shannon said was carried out right outside of his Sigourney Street apartment.

"As I came out the door, and as soon as I turned the corner, that's when they grabbed me," Shannon said.

Because it was dark and because of his condition, Shannon said didn't know what was going on.

"I could tell it was about three guys. They sounded young, one on each arm," Shannon said. "They commenced to start punching me. One had a knife up to my throat."

Lady, started growling, but Shannon said the thugs took care of her quick.

"One of the guys hit or kicked her or something," Shannon said. "She passed out."

Shannon said the thieves got away with $300 in rent money and food stamps. The assault lasting just seconds, but the emotional scars lasting days. This week, Shannon said he was holed up in his apartment out of fear.

"I didn't want to come out because the guy said if I call the cops, they'll kill me," Shannon said.

Shannon broke his silence on Friday, went to police, and made his story public for one reason only.

"I said, 'if I don't report it, it's going to happen again,'" Shannon said.

Police investigating, won't have much to go on. Shannon said he can only describe the sound of the suspects' voices. He believes they're from the neighborhood.

Connie Love said she is worried about her well-liked neighbor.

"I was feeling fine until I heard that news that he was attacked," Love said.

Shannon said is still shaken, but Lady seems to be better. Shannon said she's much more wary of strangers.

"She's going to be scared, she's going to be barking," Shannon said.

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