Albert Bartal, Firefighter And Former Marine, In Critical Condition After Savage Thanksgiving Vehicular Assault (VIDEO)

11/28/2011 02:10 pm ET | Updated Nov 28, 2011
  • Aaron Sankin Assistant San Francisco Editor, The Huffington Post

A Bay Area firefighter, single father and former Marine is in the hospital with life-threatening injuries after being intentionally hit with a car following an early morning argument at a San Francisco fast food restaurant.

Twenty-nine-year old Albert Bartal was eating at a Richmond District Jack in the Box a little before 3am on Thanksgiving night when he got into a physical altercation with a still unidentified suspect. The two were separated by bystanders and Bartal quickly left for a nearby Shell station.

(Scroll down for video)

The other man also immediately exited the restaurant and got in a black, Mazda CX SUV. He followed Bartal to the gas station parking lot and rammed him with his car before fleeing the scene.

Bartal suffered traumatic brain injuries as a result of the crash and was taken to San Francisco General Hospital.

"This is a horrible experience that no fireman or police officer would ever want to have to go through," Justin Scheef , director of the San Mateo-Santa Cruz Chapter of the CDF Firefighter's Union, told CBS San Francisco. "The nice thing is that everyone bands together during these times and it's one brotherhood."

Police have described the suspect as a mixed race or Latin male, 18-24 years old, with short black hair and a manicured beard. Once captured, the suspect will likely be charged with attempted murder and assault.

The victim is a San Francisco native who rose to the rank of sergeant during his four years in the U.S. Marine Corps. He is the single father of a two-year old and has spent the past five years as a seasonal firefighter at the Santa Clara County's Saratoga Summit Fire Station.

"Our main concern is his well-being and recovery," Cal Fire Captain Jonathan Cox told the San Francisco Examiner, "and assisting SFPD in their ongoing investigation."

The San Francisco Police Department has released this video of the suspect and are asking anyone with relevant information to call (415) 575-4444 or text a tip to TIP411.

Update:: The Albert Bartal relief fund has been established C/O the San Francisco Police Credit Union. People may make donations at the SFPCU 2550 Irving Street, CA. 94122 (Account # 1379608)