Rush hour fight in Downtown Austin ends with scooter in a car

Video shows the sudden and shocking end to a confrontation at the corner of 7th and Brazos streets.

Among the stunned witnesses was Dave Dinoff who was riding into work on his motorcycle. 

"Yeah, that was surprising, just crazy, I don’t really know what to think of that other than was just obnoxious for what happened,” said Dinoff.

Dinoff says it all began when a pedestrian crossed against the light and then allegedly punched a car moving through the intersection. Broken glass remains in front of the Omni Hotel where the car, according to Dinoff, stopped and then quickly backed onto the sidewalk. 

"The driver of the Prius [actually a Nissan] gets out, I remember some sort of a running kick at the pedestrian, they both go to the ground,” said Dinoff.

The driver Lawrence Black does not regret confronting the pedestrian.

"He was attacking the car from my front if I went forward he would've been hit, I don't wanna run over somebody over, but I will kick some ass if they attacked me in my car,” said Black who also claimed the man tried to hit him first.

From a top floor in a building across the street, Sam Pohl was in his office. It was the loud outburst that drew his attention down to the street. As he watched, a co-worker recorded the fight that spilled into the roadway.  

"I'd say this is a little more than a wacky Wednesday, this a heck of a way to start your day. Its really kind of crazy that people are emboldened enough to get into a fight and then even more so throw a scooter threw the window of a car,” said Pohl.

After the scooter was thrown into the car, the pedestrian ran up Brazos toward the State Capitol.

"Both people could have reacted better. I don't think getting into a fight on the way to work, or whatever, is the best thing that could have happened,” said Dinoff.

This incident almost immediately went viral on social media. and it’s being used in the ongoing debate over Austin's decision to let transients camp out in public places. Governor Greg Abbott, who has requested images of bad behavior by Austin's transient community, re-tweeted the video and asked “Is allowing the homeless to do whatever they want really helping the homeless?"

Investigators spent the day trying to identify those involved in the incident and could not immediately say if the pedestrian who threw the scooter is homeless. The case has been classified as criminal mischief.

"He had no reason to grab a scooter,” said Black.

Black is understandably upset but said he is not mad. 

“I'm sad for him, I'm sad for people like me or anybody working here that have to go through this and I'm sad that a lot of them blame it on homeless people."
Black says he used to be homeless. He wants meaningful reforms and said that he supports Abbott's effort to bring about change in Austin.