"Once he was on the ground, he was begging for mercy," the witness said.
Someone eventually called police, who arrived a short time later. Coltey was responsive at the scene, but his head trauma later worsened.
Detectives have been unable to talk to him at the hospital, Cooper said.
The Transit Mall has a reputation for drug and alcohol activity. In years past, robberies, beatings and stabbings also have been reported there.
Charleston Patrolman Steve Petty Jr. is assigned to patrol the Transit Mall area, but he had left before the altercation occurred, Cooper said.
"He had been there during the day. That area is heavily patrolled seven days a week," Cooper said.
"This video just shows how quick it takes for something like this to happen."
Martin Arellano, manager of the Rio Grande restaurant near Court Street, said his customers fear walking through the Transit Mall to get to his restaurant.
He's considered hiring a security guard or police officer to patrol near his store on the weekends, he said. His staff sometimes breaks up fights on the street, and panhandlers asking for money often bother customers.
"People are just fearful to come through here," Arellano said.
Reach Travis Crum at travis.c...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5163.