Victim: ‘I took a hell of a beating’

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BY ANDREAS YILMA

REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

NAUGATUCK — Borough police are investigating after an 86-year-old apartment tenant was attacked and robbed of about $900 on June 6.

John Hutt, who lives alone at Oak Terrace Apartments,  53 Conrad St., said Thursday he was watching TV with his back to his unlocked but closed door when someone sneaked inside at about 5:30 p.m. The suspect put him in a chokehold, dragged him backward with the chair and punched his face at least five times, he said. The suspect stole about $900 in cash from Hutt’s right pocket and fled.

The incident occurred about 20 minutes after his nurse aide left his apartment, Hutt said.

“Whoever it was, he was whistling shots right into my head and beat the hell out of me. I had blood all over the place,” he said. “There’s a rug in there that’s got blood over it. I took a hell of a beating.”

Police said the incident is under investigation.

Hutt said the suspect knew where the money was but he doesn’t know how the thief got that information.

“I just want to find out who the hell is doing this? Sooner or later, they’re going to kill somebody,” Hutt said.

Though he was feeling better a couple of days after the violent incident, Hutt said he has become paranoid and now uses a mop or broom to jam against the door handles after he locks his door.

Hutt said police officers helped console him, and he hopes they find the suspect.

“They gotta do something. You’ve got these renegade bastards that live up here and they prey on other people,” he said.

A Navy veteran who said he’s been robbed before, Hutt said this incident scared him because it was in the afternoon and the sun was out. He now keeps everything locked.

“That last one scared the hell out of me. I’m a pretty brave guy,” he said. “I’d hold my own against anybody in my day, but this one here, it seemed to hurt more.”

Hutt, who grew up in Naugatuck, said he has macular degeneration in his left eye, heart and back issues and a hernia.

“I love this town and I love the people in it,” Hutt said. “Whatever I got left, I just want a little bit of peace. That’s not asking too much.”

Richard Cignotti, who lives in the same apartment complex and grew up with Hutt, said the complex used to be just for the elderly until about four years ago. A woman next door had her walker stolen recently as well, he noted.