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Former gas station employee loses job, home after beaten at work

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — John Tucker was beaten in the middle of a September day at the Speedway gas station on West Washington Street while he was working as an attendant.

John Tucker told News 8 on Tuesday that the whole ordeal on Sept. 11 changed his entire life. Talking about the attacker, Tucker said, “He actually took me and picked me up and power-drove my face into the floor.”

According to a probable cause affidavit filed by the Marion Count Prosecutor’s Office, John Tucker was beaten until he was visibly bloody at the gas station at the intersection of West Washington Street and North White River Parkway Drive West, which is just west of White River State Park.

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department arrested Dantrail Shephard on Oct. 29 on charges of battery resulting in moderate bodily injury.

Tucker said, “There’s a point that’s, like, ‘OK. You won now. Move on.’ He wouldn’t, and I tried to hold him in the store in the process.”

Tucker said he was attacked when he tried to get his assailant out of the store to keep other customers safe. He said his female coworker was the only person to try to help him as he was being attacked. One customer, a regular visitor to the business, did offer medical assistance to Tucker after the fact.

“It’s just a hard thing to think about that people walked by like nothing happened,” Tucker said. “Half of it, I don’t even remember, and I just want to say thank you to that one person. I owe her my life.”

Tucker may be healed on the outside, but the attack made a lasting impact on him. He said that he suffers from “anxiety, ringing in my ears.

“There’s a lot of stuff I’m dealing with, but you know you deal. It’s just hard. I don’t think about it. I try not to. It’s hard when I started mentioning to her, like, ‘You saw it.’ Just brings me to tears.”

Tucker was fired when he tried to return to work two days after the attack. He said the reason was that he’d left the register unattended during the attack.

His Speedway attendant position was one of his two full-time jobs and provided his medical insurance. The loss of half of his income has left Tucker homeless, and he has been living with friends ever since.

“I was on the street for a while, but I have friends and they helped me,” Tucker said.

Speedway paid for Tucker’s medical bills from the attack but did not respond to News 8’s request for comment.

“It’s sad,” Tucker said. “It’s sad that you have to look over your shoulder, watch what you say, where you walk, how you walk, what you wear. It’s gotten sad how society has turned.”

The prosecutor’s office would not comment on the case because “the case remains pending at this time.” A pretrial conference was on Dec. 2, and attorneys are due back in court Thursday morning for a hearing.

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