A teen suspect who is accused of robbing a Vietnamese mother, 44, in a violent attack that left her paralyzed, has made sick phone calls from prison criticizing the woman for starting a GoFundMe. Nhung Truong may never completely recover from the spinal injuries she sustained when teenager Joseph Harrell body-slammed her into a wall while attempting to steal money from her. To help pay for an upcoming trip back to her home in Vietnam, Truong had just withdrawn $4,300 from a cash machine.
It is now reported that Harrell made several phone calls from the detainment center, and was heard conversing with someone, criticizing Truong for raising more than $320,000 to meet the exorbitant treatment cost for care and rehabilitation.
Initially, Harrell’s bond was set at $200,000, and later reduced to $100,000 due to the robbery allegation. About ten days later, he was accused in another robbery case, an instance where the bond was also decreased from $40,000 to $30,000. President of the Houston Police Officers Union Douglas Griffith stated that he was concerned that if the teen is released from prison, he is likely to victimize more people.
According to Griffith, the teen was unable to comprehend why his bond was reduced. The teen should be detained because he poses a risk to society. The teen allegedly had an accomplice named Zy’Nika Woods, who is also accused of participating in the robbery. Truong allegedly withdrew money from an ATM on February 13 and Harrell trailed her for more than 23 miles.
Houston police feel the incident was a “jugging” assault, where criminals target people who have withdrawn money from a cash machine. The thief was seen on camera pulling out an envelope from Truong’s possessions and the police think he believed she had cash. He started to run but stopped after realizing he had picked up the incorrect envelope. He then ran off with the cash after body-slamming Truong to the ground.
Truong is a single mother of three children, ages 13, 15, and 20. They now rely on her for assistance. Her daughter Linh Duong remarked that the money lost was small compared to the loss of her leg. According to her other daughter Van Duong, there is only a 50% chance of survival. A GoFundMe page has raised $320,000 as donations poured in for Truong’s medical bills.
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