Cleveland homeowner savagely beaten by drug dealer

Posted at 9:09 PM, Aug 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-24 23:41:18-04

A Cleveland homeowner is recovering from serious injuries to his face after being savagely beaten by a drug dealer.

"I was lucky I didn't get killed," said 67-year-old Frankie Vazquez.

It happened around 10 a.m. on August 15, when Vazquez stood outside his property on  W. 34th St. near Denison talking to his tenant.

Vazquez said they noticed a drug deal going down on the street just a few houses down, both commenting about how their once-safe neighborhood was now home to illegal activities.

Before they knew it, the drug dealer got in his car, drove down and parked in front of the pair, blocking Vazquez's driveway.

According to police, that's when Vazquez yelled, "This is my neighborhood. Go sell your drugs elsewhere."

Seconds later, the man punched Vazquez in the head so hard, he fell to the ground unconscious. Surveillance video shows the man continue to kick Vazquez in the head as he lay on the ground.

"We didn't provoke him," Vazquez said. "He could have done his sale and just left. But he didn't. He chose to stop and attack me."

Now, Vazquez is healing from surgery and injuries to his face -- three concussions, five stitches, a broken nose, fractured facial bones and the loss of vision in his left eye.

Despite all that and the long road to recovery ahead, he's still standing strong to stop the drugs from taking over his neighborhood.

"You'll be caught. You'll be caught, and I hope you pay for it, like I paid for it, and for a good while too," Vazquez said.

The suspect description is: 25-year-old B/M, 5’8" tall, 165 pounds, dark complexion, wearing a white t-shirt and camouflage pants

Surveillance cameras captured the suspect's vehicle. According to police, the vehicle in the photos has passenger-side front quarter damage. The second vehicle pictured is an older Pontiac Trans-Am with a pearlescent paint job.

If anyone has any information about this crime or the vehicles involved, please contact Detective Janet Murphy at 216-623-5218.