Elderly man in hospital after assault and robbery in Clovis, suspect arrested

Alyssa Flores Image
Saturday, December 31, 2022
Elderly man in hospital after assault and robbery in Clovis, suspect arrested
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A 78-year-old Fresno County man is in critical condition after he was attacked and robbed Friday morning while picking up the morning paper at a Clovis store.

CLOVIS, Calif. (KFSN) -- A 78-year-old Fresno County man is in critical condition after he was attacked and robbed Friday morning while picking up the morning paper at a Clovis store.

Every morning, before 78-year-old Frank Moore meets with friends for a morning cup of coffee, he stops at the Dollar Tree at Herndon and Clovis to pick up a newspaper.

"He parks there every morning, right in the front. The Dollar Tree employees know him by name," said Todd Thornton, Frank's grandson.

Frank's grandkids say he never saw what was coming Friday morning.

Witnesses in the area told Clovis police officers that Moore was attacked, hit over the head, and left lying on the ground.

"He was vomiting and screaming. He was not okay," recalled Lexi Knetch, Frank's granddaughter. "He is in a lot of pain right now."

Officers say the suspect, now identified as 37-year-old Joseph Wright, took off with Moore's phone.

Moore's family is grateful that police and ambulance responded within minutes.

Officials say because store employees gave a good description, they were able to track Wright down quickly in the area.

Moore's family was shocked to learn that Wright has hurt others in the past.

"It's upsetting that he has done this before and is out on the streets," said Todd.

According to Fresno County court records, Wright has years worth of drug, violence, and burglary charges on his record.

He was sentenced to three years in prison for a 2019 battery with serious bodily injury charge, part of which was served at a state mental hospital.

Now, Moore is in the ICU as doctors examine whether he's suffered from brain bleed.

His three kids and four grandkids are praying he'll recover and be able to hold his new great grandson soon.

"He really does keep this family together and I just hope that everything is okay, and just put everything in God's hands," said Kaelynn Manzo, Frank's granddaughter.

Wright is facing five felony charges including battery, assault and elder abuse.