Updated at 3:48 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 23:
Syracuse (WSYR-TV) – A teenager has been charged in connection with an assault that left a 70-year-old victim with serious injuries outside of a Valley Drive convenience store in Syracuse Saturday morning.
Romeo Williams, 18, of Chemung Street, was charged with second degree assault.
Police said that charge could change.
Williams has an extensive criminal history. He has been charged on 14 prior occasions for crimes that included three felonies, two of them violent.
In August, he was arrested for criminal possession of a weapon.
Police say that although he was with four other people, Williams alone attacked 70-year-old James Gifford outside of the 7-Eleven
at the intersection of Valley Drive and South Avenue around 6 a.m.
According to police, Williams arrived at the convenience store in a vehicle.
They say he lunged at Gifford and knocked him unconscious before entering the 7-Eleven.
Inside the store, Williams allegedly “celebrated” the incident before going back outside, where he kicked the prone man in the head and face.
Williams’ friends pulled him away from the victim, according to police.
"This is a random, viscous, unprovoked attack on an elderly member of our society. That's exactly what this is. This is not a game. This is a violent attack. There's no game involved in this at all. Knockout game or any other game that you want to call it. This is a vicious attack on an elderly member of our society," said Syracuse Police Chief Frank Fowler.
Gifford was taken to Upstate University Hospital where he is listed in critical condition.
Williams was arraigned on Monday and taken to the Justice Center in lieu of $100,000 bail.