Metro Transit Police have identified a juvenile suspect in a Nov. 22 attack that occurred on the Green Line, the agency said Tuesday.
The investigation stems from a Gaithersburg man’s complaint that his longtime partner was viciously attacked and called anti-gay slurs aboard a Green Line train as the operator ignored repeated calls for help.
Calvin Lawrence, 48, said his partner, Joseph Cowart, 43, was punched, kicked and called a gay slur repeatedly while being attacked by up to a dozen teenagers. The attack, which began near Fort Totten and continued four stops to the Shaw-Howard University station, started after Cowart attempted to intervene in the attempted robbery of a 14-year-old boy, Metro said.
Metro spokesman Dan Stessel said Tuesday that the transit agency is awaiting the approval of a juvenile custodial order from the District Office of the Attorney General to proceed with an arrest of the suspect. Further information about the suspect was not available. Stessel described obtaining the order as a lengthy process, often taking one to three weeks. If approved, “the custodial order and arrest will likely happen within hours of each other,” he said.
According to a police report, an attacker approached Cowart and proceeded to “punch and kick” him in “the right temple, both knees, right shin and left ribs,” causing abrasions.
Cowart, who most recently worked as a cashier and ticket taker at the AMC Loews Rio Cinemas at Washingtonian Center, will have to undergo months of physical therapy, Lawrence told the Post last month. He also is now afraid to ride Metro.
A month later, on Dec. 21, a man was attacked on the Red Line at rush hour, by what appeared to be a group of youths. The victim suffered a concussion and broken jaw.
Stessel said Tuesday that Metro had received “many tips” in that case but a suspect has not been identified. Police are looking for six persons of interest in the case. The assault occurred between Union Station and NoMa-Gallaudet University during the evening rush.