INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – An Indianapolis man died after being hit in the head with a baseball bat.
IMPD said officers responded to the location on Walnut Street around 1 a.m. Wednesday. The victim had been knocked out as the result of an argument.
Police are treating the case as a death investigation. Witnesses have helped identify a suspect, but so far no arrests have been made.
According to police reports, the first officers on scene found 56-year-old Dennis Hendon sitting in the passenger seat of a car awake and talking, but disoriented.
The victim then refused to go to the hospital before he later died from his injuries.
Video shows Hendon walking down the sidewalk and picking up a baseball bat from outside his front door.
Friends and witnesses say Hendon intended to help a neighbor who was in a dispute with the father of her child.
"He wasn’t just going to stand by and do nothing. He was that kind of person," said Jason Ward.
The fight between Hendon and the suspect took place in the shadows, but witnesses told police after wrestling the bat away from Hendon in the middle of the street, the suspect hit Hendon in the head and ran away. That injury later proved fatal.
"He died trying to help somebody else. Some young lady that was going through violence, he was trying to stop it. He gave his life for somebody else," said Ward.
According to the police report, when police arrived Hendon "could not tell the officer what happened but was complaining of pain in his head. The medics tried to persuade him to go to the hospital but he insisted that he did not want to go."
After going back inside his upstairs apartment, he was later discovered near death by a close friend.
"He was barely breathing. It was like he was breathing his last breath of air," said friend Aisha Morton.
Unfortunately, by the time Hendon went to the hospital it was too late to save his life.
Throughout the day Thursday friends and family gathered outside his home to talk about the man they loved.
"I hope Dennis is remembered as a loving and giving man," said Ward.
"He really did have a big heart and was like a father figure to me," said his niece Chelsea Reed. "He just had a really big heart. He always did."
So far no criminal charges have been filed, but the Marion County Prosecutors Office is assisting in the investigation.
Police urged anyone with information to contact the IMPD Homicide Office at (317) 327-3475 or Crime Stoppers of Central Indiana at (317) 262-8477 (TIPS).