Family of Mentally-Challenged Beating Victim Speaks Out - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Family of Mentally-Challenged Beating Victim Speaks Out

Domingo Correa Domingo Correa
Gary Avilez Gary Avilez
Janet Cabansag Janet Cabansag

By Minna Sugimoto

WAIANAE (KHNL) -- A man accused of beating another man inside a fast-food restaurant in Waianae over the weekend makes his first court appearance in the case Monday. The victim, a mentally-challenged elderly man, is in the hospital fighting for his life.

Janet Cabansag breaks down in tears. Her 69-year-old uncle's on life support, after a vicious attack inside the Waianae Burger King over the weekend.

"For somebody to beat up on somebody like that, he's going to be 70 years old this month," Cabansag said through tears. "And for somebody to beat him like that, it's just uncalled for."

Fifty-three-year-old Gary Avilez is charged with attempted murder. Investigators say he was in the restroom when Domingo Correa, who was in the restroom earlier, tried to get in to retrieve his fanny pack.

"He left it in the bathroom, from what I understand, and he just wanted it back," Cabansag said. "You know, so all the guy had to do was give it back."

Instead, police say Avilez beat the elderly man, and started choking him. By the time help arrived, the victim was going in and out of consciousness.

"He's got a tube draining his brain 'cause he's got blood in his brain," Cabansag said. "And they need to control the pressure."

Family members say Correa is mentally challenged with only a fifth-grade education.

"He's illiterate," Cabansag said. "He can not read and write. So people was the way he communicated."

He found joy in visiting the folks at Burger King every day.

"He just wanted to make friends with people," Cabansag said. "You know, that's all he wanted."

Avilez is scheduled to be back in court Wednesday. His bail is set at $50,000.

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