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New Smyrna man attacks valet attendant at Fort Lauderdale hotel, police say

Surveillance video shows man punch valet attendant at Ocean Sky Resort

FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A New Smyrna man is accused of punching a valet attendant after an altercation Tuesday night at the Ocean Sky Resort in Fort Lauderdale, according to police.

The victim, Rodolfo Rodriguez, was working as an attendant at the resort when he was punched by John Kiernan, police said.

Surveillance video shows Rodriguez on the ground. Reporters from News 6 sister station WPLG spoke with Rodriguez, who said he told Kiernan the parking service was $18 a day. When  Kiernan refused to pay or move his pickup truck, Rodriguez warned him that his truck could get towed.

However, Kiernan told police that he requested a guest pass.

When officers spoke to Kiernan, he told police that the victim said, "You're just looking for a fight."
Kiernan said his life experiences taught him that "this was an aggressive comment, so he chose to hit the guy first," the report said.

That's when Kiernan punched Rodriguez, police said.

"This guy is crazy," Rodriguez told WPLG.

Rodriguez said he doesn't remember much after he was knocked out, but he said Kiernan told him that he didn't want to pay to valet his truck.

The surveillance video also shows a woman in red shorts having a conversation with the valet attendant.

Seemingly unhappy about the outcome, she walks inside to see hotel manager Mark Dyer.

"She said, 'Yeah, I'm not too happy with the parking situation,' so we had a brief two to three-minute exchange," Dyer said. "During that exchange, I faced to the left of me, and I saw the valet being punched."
Dyer said the man claimed that he was driving an $80,000 vehicle and shouldn't have to pay for parking.
"It basically doesn't really make a difference what the valet said to you," Dyer said he told the man. "You have no right to put your hands on another individual like that."

Kiernan has not been charged.