WATCH: Surveillance footage shows suspect punch man unconscious at Carolina Forest bar

Editor’s note: The video of the assault may be graphic to some viewers. Discretion is advised.

CAROLINA FOREST, S.C. (WBTW) — Surveillance footage obtained by News13 shows a 32-year-old man punching another man in the face and knocking him unconscious at a Carolina Forest bar over the weekend.

Anthony John Albanese of Myrtle Beach was charged with first-degree assault and battery. He was booked into the J. Reuben Long Detention Center early Sunday morning and released Monday on a $20,000 bond.

Police responded to the Tavern in the Forest at about 1:40 a.m. Sunday for a fight, an incident report shows. When they arrived, they learned Albanese had punched a man in the face, knocking him out and causing his head to hit the floor.

The victim was put on a breathing tube from the assault, which was captured on surveillance video, according to an arrest warrant. The full video is above, which shows Albanese and the man in some sort of altercation before Albanese throws a sucker punch and he’s pulled away by another man.

Officers found the man laying on his back near the bathrooms, unresponsive and bleeding from the back of his head, which had a gash, the report said.

55-year old Frank Capolino, the victim of the brutal assault, is in a medically-induced coma after having emergency surgery to stop the bleeding and swelling in his brain. He is currently fighting for his life.

  • Courtesy: The Capolino family
    Courtesy: The Capolino family
  • Courtesy: The Capolino family
    Courtesy: The Capolino family
  • Courtesy: The Capolino family
    Courtesy: The Capolino family

Derek Capolino, Frank’s son, said to see his father in such a state is unbelievable.

“To see someone so full of life be in a hospital room, barely hanging out until life, it’s eye-opening,” he said. “It’s hard to put into words.”

Casey Sherman, Frank’s longtime friend, said the video that shows that assault is “disturbing.”

“I was withholding judgment, at least until I saw the video,” Sherman said. “And I was just absolutely appalled, disgusted, horrified, you know, to what that video showed.”

“Frank has, you know, many times in that video, he had his hands behind his back,” Sherman continued. ” So, he certainly wasn’t anticipating a violent confrontation, you know, like that and ultimately ended up in the hospital. And, as I said, fighting for his life right now.”

Capolino has not woken up since the incident and relatives said he has a catheter in his skull trying to lessen the brain blees and is on a ventilator.

“And then not, you know, applying any aid to Frank when he when he hit the floor, you see these people kind of running away from the assault, which sickens me,” Sherman said.

Relatives said Capolino regularly visits the Myrtle Beach area and was in town for bike week and were shocked to hear the news of the brutal attack. They said Capolino is always the guy who de-escalates a situation and not the other way around.

Derek Capolino said his father is still full of life.

“If you knew my dad, he’s still full of life and vigor and he just wants to make you laugh,” he said. “And he just wants to feel those good vibes.”

He is the toughest . . . person that I’ve ever met, and also the most caring and joyous person that I’ve ever met,” Sherman said.

Capolino was a regular at the Tavern, which said in a statement that Frank is in their thoughts and prayers.

“First and foremost, our thoughts and prayers are with Frankie and his family as we all hope for a full and speedy recovery. Frankie is our friend, our neighbor, and is well known to our local community. His outgoing and larger-than-life personality is already missed, and we hope to see him again soon.”

Relatives told News13 that Capolino will be taken off the ventilator to see if he can breathe on his own, but even if all goes well, he will likely have to stay in the area for at least a month while he recovers before he can go back home to New York.

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Caleb is a digital producer at News13. Caleb joined the team in January 2023 after graduating from Liberty University. He is from Northern Virginia. Follow Caleb on X, formerly Twitter, and read more of his work here.

Savannah Denton joined News 13 in July 2023 as a reporter and producer. Savannah is from Atlanta, Georgia, and is a graduate of the University of Alabama. Follow Savannah on X, formerly Twitter, and read more of her work here

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