FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) — The Broward Sheriff’s Office is investigating the death of a man whose body was found beaten in Ft. Lauderdale.
A passerby noticed him on the ground near a vacant building at 1955 S. SR 7, around 11:40 p.m. Saturday, and called police. Initially the 911 caller thought the man needed medical assistance, but when BSO officers arrived, they realized he had been beaten to death.
His friends think he was attacked in his sleep.
“There was blood on his face and he was killed, somebody hit him while he was sleeping,” said Tracy, who knew him for about six years.
Known as “Morocco” to those in the area, homicide detectives identified him as 46-year-old Youssef Hamraoui.
“It’s about a little over 10 people that sleep out there, but all of a sudden nobody knows nothing, which is kind of odd, which is kind of weird,” said another friend. “It happened, like, literally out in the open.”
Some of the other homeless were visibly on edge, worried they’re being targeted by group of men.
“It’s a little group, from what I’ve heard, that like to hang out beating up on homeless people, catching them off guard,” said Tracy. “I’ve heard about it and I’ve seen a lot of people get beat up. I seen them the next day beat up. And I don’t think that’s right.”
Police haven’t confirmed her suspicion.
Anyone with information is asked to contact BSO Homicide Detective Bryan Tutler at 954-321-4200. If you wish to remain anonymous, contact Broward Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS (8477) or online at browardcrimestoppers.org. Anonymous tips that lead to an arrest are eligible for a reward of up to $3,000.