OAKLAND PARK, FLA. (WSVN) - The Broward Sheriff’s Office is searching for a man who attacked another man with a sword over a dump cart that was found in a trash pile in Oakland Park.
Speaking with 7News Monday evening, Todd Beavers described the frightening moment he realized an armed man was about to attack him outside of his home off Northwest 12th Avenue after his evening jog, July 15.
“When he pulled out the sword, I thought, ‘What am I doing?’ I thought, ‘Is he really going to do this?'” said Beavers.
Detectives said it all started about half a mile away, when Beavers came across a man searching through a bulk trash pile in front of a vacant home near Prospect Road and Northwest 11th Terrace.
Beavers joined in on the search through the trash pile, which included rubble and discarded equipment. Eventually he came across a black plastic wheelbarrow.
“I saw a cart in the pile, and I thought, ‘I could use that,'” he said.
But the victim said the other man also had his eye on the dump cart.
BSO spokesperson Keyla Concepcion said the subject became upset, feeling that he had rights over the pile.
“He apparently felt that he was there first, so he should have first dibs at anything that was in the pile,” she said. “Evidently, the jogger felt differently.”
Officials said the two men exchanged words, but Beavers left with the wheelbarrow.
“He started to jog home with it. What he didn’t realize was that the man followed him home,” said Concepcion.
Investigators said Beavers eventually noticed that the other man was walking behind him.
“I turned behind me, and he had a sword out, chasing me, so I just kept running,” he said.
Once both men made it to Beavers’ home, surveillance video captured the subject lunging at the jogger with the sword and taking several swings.
Area resident Valerie Lyons said she was across the street when she witnessed the altercation.
“It was crazy, ’cause he was definitely hitting my neighbor with a machete over a wheelbarrow,” she said.
“I really was in shock the whole time. I was really shocked that he would do it,” said Beavers. “I was shocked. I couldn’t believe that he was going to really try to kill me for a cart.”
“You need to take a pause and really think about what you’re doing and the consequences of your actions,” said Concepcion.
Area residents who saw the surveillance video were shocked by the confrontation.
“Wow! That’s nuts that for a wheelbarrow you’re willing to beat up people. That’s crazy,” said a neighbor.
However, the video shows the sword apparently landing on the wheelbarrow. Beavers was not hurt.
The jogger is then seen pointing out that the man was being recorded, and the subject could be seen walking away.
However, deputies said, he told Beavers that he would return.
“I should have just let him have the cart,” said Beavers.
The victim then left the cart sitting in his front yard. It was later picked up by a woman dressed in pink who dragged it away while she insulted the jogger.
“I said, ‘You know what? You’re on camera. You want to take the cart? Do it right in front of the camera,’ and she did it,” he said.
Monday night, a woman who identified herself as Alice Bolden told 7News she was the resident in the surveillance video who took the cart.
“That was my wheelbarrow … and I have neighbors that can verify that because I asked them today if they wanted to buy some stuff also,” she said.
Bolden said this all started because of a misunderstanding. She said the two men had been fighting over items she put out for a garage sale, and the cart was never up for grabs.
When asked whether she saw the sword-wielding man, Bolden replied, “No, no, no, I just — on the news. I didn’t see anything when I arrived here. All I saw was the white guy talking on the phone, and I see a bunch of people out here.”
Now authorities are hoping someone will recognize the subject and point them in the right direction.
“We’re releasing this video in the hopes that someone can help identify him,” said Concepcion.
Beavers may have lost the wheelbarrow, but he said he’s thankful he didn’t lose his life. As the search for the sword-wielding man continues, he said he’s started to think twice about the whole ordeal.
“I really regret it. By the time I got here with the cart and he was still chasing me, I felt like, ‘What did I get myself into for a stupid cart?’ I don’t even need it,'” he said. “I just felt really stupid about it.”
If you have any information on the sword-wielding man’s identity, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $3,000 reward.
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