NEW YORK CITY — Police are closing in on more suspects in the assault by motorcyclists who sought out retribution on an SUV driver who struck three bikers in Washington Heights on Sunday. Three men have been arrested in connection with the attack, police said, and two new arrests were made on Friday night.
Brooklyn man Robert Sims, 35, was arrested Friday by police and charged with multiple counts of gang assault, assault, and criminal possession of a weapon, police said. He was set to appear in Manhattan Criminal Court on Saturday.
The other suspect, Reginald Chance, 38, also from Brooklyn, had been tracked down by cops through the week and was expected to surrender himself to police on Friday, according to Fox News.
Chance was described by police as a "top target" in the case, after footage emerged of him allegedly using his silver helmet to smash the windscreen of assault victim Alexian Lien's SUV.
The video, uploaded to YouTube.com, went viral, with more than 6 million views by Friday, according to a USA Today report. The video has since been made private, although copied versions remained available to view.
Lien, 33, had been driving with his wife and 2-year-old daughter on the Henry Hudson Highway on Sunday when his black Range Rover was involved in a minor fender bender with a group of motorbikers, the Lien family has said. Fearing violent retribution, Lien tried to flee the scene, running over biker Edwin Mieses, according to cops. Mieses's girlfriend said her longtime partner was left paralyzed by the incident, and claims he was trying to break up the confrontation.
Lien allegedly hit two more bikers as he tried to escape, leading to a chase up to West 178th Street, police said. When the group of bikers caught up with Lien, a member of the group proceeded to smash the windshield of his SUV, before allegedly dragging him from the car.
Lien suffered a slashed face and was beaten about the body while his wife and child remained in the car. Lien has not been charged in connection to the incident, and claimed he acted in self-defense.
Police prosecutors have not ruled out charging Lien, and NYC Police Commissioner Ray Kelly stated that the investigation into the incident was still ongoing, according to CBSNews.
"Our fear for our lives was confirmed when the incident ended with the ruthless and brutal attack on my husband, me, and most importantly, our 2-year-old child," Lien's wife, Rosalyn Ng, said Thursday.
Sims' and Chance's arrests were the latest developments in the case, following an October 2 arrest of 42-year-old biker Allen Edwards. Edwards, from Queens, was charged with reckless endangerment and criminal mischief, and menacing.
Police said Saturday that they were still hunting for a man in connection with Sunday's assault.
Police are asking for help in locating the man, who is wanted for questioning. The man was wearing a black hoody and jeans at the time of the incident, police said, and they released an image captured from surveillance footage.
Police urged members of the public to contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-8477 or at the Crime Stoppers website, at www.nypdcrimestoppers.com. All tips can be submitted anonymously.