Some news organizations are refuting the existence of an alleged phenomenon known as the “knockout game” that has been the subject of media warnings in recent weeks.
According to reports by CNN, the Today show, USA TODAY and others, the game takes place when young people randomly assault strangers in an attempt to knock them out with one punch.
The attacks are leading to arrests, more officers on the streets and warnings for vigilance among the public, law enforcement officials and victims advocates told USA TODAY. In New Haven, Conn., police spokesman David Hartman said police are investigating six incidents in the past month as possible “knockouts.”
But police officials in several cities where the attacks have been reported say the knockout game is an urban myth, and that attacks that have received recent attention in the media have been random assaults, the New York Times is reporting.
“We’re trying to determine whether or not this is a real phenomenon,” the news organization quotes New York police commissioner Raymond Kelly as saying. “I mean, yes, something like this can happen. But we would like to have people come forward and give us any information they have.”