Park Point Assault Victim Dies

Updated: January 12, 2019 09:10 PM

The victim of an assault and burglary incident on Park Point died at Essentia Health Saturday, according to the Duluth Police Department. 

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Larry Watczak, 70, was assaulted on Jan. 2 at his home located on the 800 block of S Lake Ave in Park Point during a burglary incident.

Watczak's brother, Jeffrey Watczak, provided a statement to WDIO saying, "Trying to come to grips with the fact my brother was murdered. I have no words."

Watczak told police two unknown males walked through his unlocked front door and hit him over the head with a blunt object.

The criminal complaint says a blanket was thrown over Watczak's head before one of the males he described as a black man demanded money. Watczak said he told the suspect he did not have any money or change other than what was in his pocket. Watczak said the suspect took $2.00 in change out of his pocket and his cellphone.

Watczak managed to call 911 to report the incident. When officers arrived, he was holding a towel to his head and was speaking with police about the incident. 

Watczak was taken to the hospital and rushed into surgery. He was in a coma since his hospitalization.

A Gofundme was originally made for Watczak's medical expenses.

Duluth Police said after a thorough preliminary investigation, items recovered in a search warrant of the suspect's residence, and review of multiple surveillance cameras, officers arrested Darrell Darryl Mayhew on Jan. 6 for burglary and assault of Watczak.

Mayhew was taken into custody and formally charged on Jan. 9 with first-degree assault, aggravated first-degree robbery and first-degree burglary.

Mayhew's bail was set at $750,000 and was denied a referral to supervised release.

The Duluth Police Department said they will continue working with the St. Louis County Attorney’s Office to consider amending the charges.

Duluth Police thanked the help of citizens who called in tips and the assistance of area businesses and residents who shared surveillance footage for the investigation. Police were able to make an arrest less than 100 hours after the original 911 call.

This is an ongoing and open investigation.

Copyright 2019 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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