The man who authorities say assaulted a physically disabled man outside a borough convenience store, throwing what amounted to a “sucker punch” at him, is now claiming that he is the victim of an alleged assault by a corrections officer at the Chester County Prison. The District Attorney’s office said prison officials are investigating the claim.
In a handwritten letter mailed to the Daily Local News last week, Barry Robert Baker Jr. — who identified himself as “the person whom you guys love writing about” — stated that he was assaulted by one of the officers assigned to the protective custody block of the prison where he is being housed.
He said one of the officers attacked him while another acted as a “look out,” and that he suffered a variety of injuries, according to the letter dated Aug. 2. They include a separated shoulder, a concussion, and a seizure.
Baker, 29, of Georgetown, Delaware, and formerly of East Fallowfield, is charged with simple assault and related counts in the May attack on a 22-year-old man who has cerebral palsy. Baker is accused of leveling a punch that caught the man square in the face as he stood beside his car outside the 7-11 store on South High Street in West Chester.
Before throwing the punch, Baker had twice mocked the way the man walked, according to police. The episode was captured on video, which went viral on the internet after it was released by county prosecution authorities.
He is also charged with fleeing and eluding police, stemming from a widespread manhunt among local police, Chester County Sheriffs, and U.S. Marshals to take him into custody on warrants issued after his arrest on the assault charge.
Baker’s attorney, Thomas Purl III of Downingtown, acknowledged on Tuesday that his client had complained to him that he was “roughed up” by a corrections officer. He said he had alerted the prosecutor handling the case, Assistant District Attorney Cynthia Morgan, to the accusation.