MEMPHIS, Tenn. — An elderly man is hospitalized after being assaulted in his back yard in Cooper Young.

Amid the calmness along Evelyn Avenue is a community on edge after learning an elderly neighbor was brutally beaten during an attempted robbery Wednesday evening.

The victim, who’s in his 80s, told Memphis Police the suspect asked him for ride. He declined and moments later the suspect showed up to his home and demanded his car keys.

The elderly man reportedly told the suspect they were in the house. After the suspect failed to gain entry to the home, that’s when he started to assault the victim.

“He’s kind of like the watchdog of our neighborhood,” a neighbor told WREG. “He looks out for everybody. We look out for him. He’s become a friend; he doesn’t have much family. I just think that’s just really unfortunate that he now has to worry about the safety himself in his home.”

Prior to the attack, neighbors captured surveillance footage of who is believed to be the suspect. He is seen on camera stopping by multiple people homes, including a woman who has asked not to be identified.

“I opened the wood door and talked with him through our Glassdoor, and he asked if he could detail and wash our cars and I said no,” the woman said.

It’s unclear how long the victim will be in the hospital. If you recognize the man in the surveillance footage, call Crime Stoppers at (901) 528-CASH.