ROSENBERG, TX (The Sun) – Police fear that a viral video trend known as the “Knockout Game” may be rearing its ugly head again after footage emerged of a man decking a total stranger.
Shocking footage has emerged of an unsuspecting victim strolling down the street in Rosenberg, Texas before being laid out by a thug.
The passerby was caught completely unaware by the blow which instantly knocked him unconscious with such force that it sent his hat flying off his head.
Bystanders failed to help the man after he thudded to the floor in footage released by local cops.
The 30-year-old victim spent several nights in hospital and is understood to still be recovering from his injuries.
Cops have now named 18-year-old Alejandro Maldonado as a suspect in the crime.
Police say the victim did not know his attacker who they believe may have been trying to impress pals.
They released the footage in a post titled “Tough guy wanted for aggravated assault”.
Lt. Chad Pino said: “You think it’s a game, your friends might peer pressure you into doing something, and it’s a serious offense, it’s a felony, it’s an aggravated assault.
“In this case, he sustained some serious injuries, and it’s not a game.
“It’s not going to be funny when you’re in prison.”
Maldonado had initially been tracked down and was cooperating with police.
But he vanished last week and police now hope releasing the video will shame him into turning himself in.
A number of one-punch attacks have been linked to the so-called “Knockout Game” trend in recent years.
A 37-year-old street cleaner was randomly knocked unconscious in Paterson, New Jersey, in 2015 in a video which surfaced on Facebook.
Kristian Gonzalez, who was aged 17 at the time, was later jailed for three years.