Family seeks answers in man's beating
MIAMI (WSVN) -- A South Florida man is in critical condition after being attacked and viciously beaten.
Twenty-two-year-old Rene Betancourt has a fractured skull, bruising to the brain, a tear in an artery, a broken nose and many of his teeth have been knocked out, early Saturday morning. Doctors said Betancourt was minutes from death before he arrived at the hospital.
Betancourt had to be placed in a medically-induced coma after surgery to remove blood clots and insert a plate into his skull. By Monday afternoon he was talking to family members. "It's incredible, it's a joy, that's the right word," said Rene Betancourt, Sr. with a smile on his face. "I thought, last Saturday, that I couldn't be smiling today."
The younger Betancourt answered questions from family members, Monday, giving family members hope for his recovery. "Basically we are talking to him and trying to see that he knows where's at, where he is," said his father.
Leo Harris of Jackson Memorial Hospital said doctors are optimistic about his recovery. "He's still a little clouded," Harris said, "some thing's are not making sense, but generally he's doing very, very well."
After the attack, Betancourt left a voice mail for his best friend at 2:57 Saturday morning: "I need you, man. I need you to help me. All right? Bye. Please call me back," he said.
"Obviously, I didn't hear the voice mail until I woke up, until about 9 a.m., I head the voice mail for the first time," said Sebastian Guerra.
Guerra alerted Betancourt's father, who repeatedly called his son's phone back. At almost noon, Betancourt answered to say he was by Jackson Memorial Hospital. His father went looking for him and discovered him in his car, in a parking lot six blocks away from the emergency room. "When they saw him, the face was very swollen, the eye was very swollen, full of blood," said Betancourt, Sr. "We saw a lot of blood around him."
Betancourt's family said he went to Downtown Miami to skateboard and was struck in the head during a robbery attempt. After the attack, his family thinks he tried to drive himself to hospital.
Betancourt was able to tell police that he was attacked by three to five men. "Most of the trauma was done to the head. His eyes are shut, his teeth are gone, his nose is broken," said Herdoicia Betancourt, "so whoever did this, did it with the intent of really killing him."
His family is hopeful that he will pull through. "He's a fantastic person, he's going to recover now, hopefully," said Rene Betancourt, Sr. "We don't know the extent of the injuries, but he's recovering now, very well."
Though he is recovering well, he is still mostly unconscious because he of the medication he is on.
If you have any information on this brutal beating, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a reward.
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