A part-time inspector for the city of Arnold was listed in good condition at an area hospital July 17, the day after he and a 74-year-old Arnold man allegedly were attacked by a 64-year-old Arnold man. The incident happened at about 11:45 a.m. July 16 outside a vacant home in the 2600 block of Georgia Drive, Arnold Police reported.
Arnold inspector Larry Mercer, 76, of Arnold went to the home after the city received a complaint about overgrown grass. The 74-year-old Arnold man joined Mercer when he arrived at the property to review the complaint, Arnold Police reported.
While the two were inspecting the property, the 64-year-old man came out of a home next to the vacant house. He allegedly knocked Mercer to the ground and hit the 74-year-old with a baseball bat, the report said.
Mercer’s head hit the pavement after he was knocked down, and he was bleeding. The 74-year-old man had bruises on his arm and leg and was bleeding from his arm, according to the report.
It is not known if Mercer was struck by the bat or if the alleged assailant hit him with his fist, and it is not known how many times the 74-year-old was hit with the bat, Arnold Police Capt. Rich Shular said.
Mercer and the other alleged victim were transported to an area hospital. The 74-year-old was treated and released July 16, Arnold Police said. City Administrator Bryan Richison said Mercer was kept overnight for observation.
The alleged attacker had left the scene by the time police arrived, and Arnold Police were still trying to locate him on July 17.
Richison said Mercer was a full-time inspector for the city from April 2001 until he retired in August 2016. However, Mercer was re-hired as a part-time employee in March 2017, Richison said.
“It is not something that you necessarily think about with your building inspectors,” Richison said of the incident. “You are always concerned about your police officers being in altercations, but I can’t say it something I thought would happen with a building inspector. It is very unfortunate for everyone involved.”