Earlier victim of suspect in Rick Moranis assault says she ‘could see he was crazy’

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The stranger accused of randomly attacking actor Rick Moranis on a New York City sidewalk was charged with another unprovoked assault on a couple months before. 

Marquis Ventura, 35, is said to have pulled out a knife on Ashley Davis, 34, and her husband, Glenn Smith, also 34, before punching and beating them both during the alleged incident on the subway on April 13.  

Ashley told The New York Post: ‘I thought my husband was dying. His shoulder was so badly dislocated it was down to his belly.’

Moranis, 67, who is 5ft 6in, was walking near Central Park West on the Upper West Side last month when suddenly a man walking by struck him in the head, knocking him to the ground. Police released footage of the assault which left the Ghostbusters’ star with pain in his head, back and right hip.

Ventura was arrested on Saturday night at 96th Street and Broadway subway station. The Manhattan resident has a history of 13 arrests, including five for felonies according to the Post.

Now it has emerged he was charged with misdemeanor assault after Davis and Smith were attacked. 

Restaurant manager Ashley says her attacker, later identified as Ventura, ‘randomly started beating’ her and her husband. After ‘pulling a knife’ Ashley says he punched her in the face before ‘kicking and hitting’ her spouse.   

She said: ‘I could see he was crazy. I was telling the police, this guy’s not right. This guy’s got a mental illness. 

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Marquis Ventura, 35, is said to have pulled out a knife on Ashley Davis, 34, pictured, and her husband, also 34, before punching and beating them both

Marquis Ventura, 35, was apprehended in the subway on Saturday night a few blocks away from where the attack on Rick Moranis occurred last month

Marquis Ventura, 35, right, is said to have pulled out a knife on Ashley Davis, 34, left, and her husband, also 34, before punching and beating them both. Ventura, 35, was apprehended in the subway on Saturday night a few blocks away from where the attack on Rick Moranis occurred last month

The premise of the sequel Shrunk concerns Moranis's character's now-grown son accidentally shrinking his own children. Pictured: Moranis in May 1994

The premise of the sequel Shrunk concerns Moranis’s character’s now-grown son accidentally shrinking his own children. Pictured: Moranis in May 1994

Smith was also charged with misdemeanor menacing with a weapon, court records show, after Davis says her husband picked up the knife Ventura dropped. 

Prosecutors had offered to drop both charges but Smith says they are pursuing the case. 

Honey, I Shrunk the Kids star Moranis was assaulted at the start of October. 

Davis added: ‘Neither of us should have to go through what we did.’ 

Smith was also charged with misdemeanor menacing with a weapon, court records show after Davis says he picked up the knife Ventura dropped. Prosecutors had offered to drop both charges but Smith says they are pursuing the case

Smith was also charged with misdemeanor menacing with a weapon, court records show after Davis says he picked up the knife Ventura dropped. Prosecutors had offered to drop both charges but Smith says they are pursuing the case

He was visited by officers from the Community Affairs Rapid Response team, a newly formed unit which served to check up on city crime victims ‘to let them know we are there help them out in any way that we can help them’. 

Following Ventura’s arrested the NYPD said in a tweet: ‘Thanks to an eagle-eyed sergeant from @NYPDTransit, this suspect has been apprehended and charged.’  

Footage showed the suspect was wearing a dark ‘I [love] NY’ sweatshirt, black pants and sneakers and fled the scene on foot. 

The NYPD also offered a reward of up to $2,500 for the attacker’s apprehension.   

According to new NYPD statistics, some crimes have been up while others are down compared to last year.

Murder is up 40 percent for the first nine months of 2020 when compared to the first nine months of 2019 with 344 murders compared to 246. 

Burglary and grand larceny auto have also risen, by 38 percent and 404 percent, respectively, compared to the same time period in 2019.

However, other crimes such as rape, assault and robbery have fallen by about a 33 percent, 115 percent 149 percent, respectively, from last year, data shows.   

Rick Moranis, 67, was walking on New York City's Upper West Side on Thursday around 7.30am when he was attacked (pictured)

Surveillance footage captures a stranger walking past him abruptly punching Moranis in the head, knocking him to the ground (pictured)

Rick Moranis, 67, was walking on New York City’s Upper West Side last month around 7.30am when he was attacked. Surveillance footage captures a stranger walking past him abruptly punching Moranis in the head, knocking him to the ground (left and right)

Moranis, who was born in Toronto, Canada, secured his big break when he appeared in the 1983 film Strange Brew.

He then appeared in a string of commercially successful films including Ghostbusters in 1984, Spaceballs in 1987, and two films in 1989, Ghostbusters II and Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.

The original Honey, I Shrunk the Kids was so successful that Moranis returned for sequel Honey, I Blew Up The Kid in 1992. 

He completed the trilogy with straight-to-video sequel Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves in 1997 which was his last on-camera role before his hiatus.  

Moranis has largely remained out of the spotlight since, only doing voicework for a few animated projects including the 2003 film Brother Bear and TV series The Animated Adventures Of Bob & Doug McKenzie. 

Officials from the NYPD identified the suspect Saturday as Marquis Ventura, who was spotted by a transit officer. He was taken into custody, pictured, on Saturday evening

Officials from the NYPD identified the suspect Saturday as Marquis Ventura, who was spotted by a transit officer. He was taken into custody, pictured, on Saturday evening

The 35-year-old man identified as Marquis Ventura was arrested in connection with the unprovoked attack on Rick Moranis in New York City last month.

The 35-year-old man identified as Marquis Ventura was arrested in connection with the unprovoked attack on Rick Moranis in New York City last month.

'Thanks to an eagle-eyed sergeant from @NYPDTransit, this suspect has been apprehended and charged,' the NYPD said in a tweet

‘Thanks to an eagle-eyed sergeant from @NYPDTransit, this suspect has been apprehended and charged,’ the NYPD said in a tweet

The man accused of sucker punching actor Rick Moranis is now in police custody

The man accused of sucker punching actor Rick Moranis is now in police custody 

He said he made the decision to step away to focus on being a single father to his children, Rachel and Mitchell, after losing his wife, costume designer Ann Belsky, to breast cancer in February 1991.

He told USA Today: ‘As a single parent and I just found that it was too difficult to manage to raise my kids and to do the traveling involved in making movies.

‘So I took a little bit of a break. And the little bit of a break turned into a longer break, and then I found that I really didn’t miss it.’   

Moranis was with a woman, possibly one of his adult daughters

The 5ft 6in Moranis looked preoccupied and glanced around him as he stepped out seven days after the unprovoked attack

The 5ft 6Moranis looked preoccupied and glanced around him as he stepped out seven days after the unprovoked attack

Moranis said he took a break from acting to focus on being a single father after his wife died in 1991. Pictured: Moranis in an interview for Disney+

Moranis said he took a break from acting to focus on being a single father after his wife died in 1991. Pictured: Moranis in an interview for Disney+

In February 2020, The Hollywood Reporter revealed Moranis would be reprising his role as Wayne Szalinski in Shrunk, a new sequel in the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids series.

It is the first live-action film the actor is starring in in 23 years. 

The premise of the film centers around Szalinski’s now grown-up son, portrayed by Frozen star Josh Gad, who repeats the same mistake of shrinking his own children.

In a clip for Disney+ (via Entertainment Weekly), Moranis praised the director of the original film Joe Johnston.

He had the vision of this in his head. And on that movie, I was really an actor,’ he said.

‘I think I drove him crazy a couple of times trying to get more comedy into it ’cause I was always looking for how to disrupt and get some more jokes in, and poor Joe just wanted to make his movie.’

At the time of Moranis’ attack, celebrities tweeted their anger and sent their best wishes to Moranis. 

Ryan Reynolds, who starred with Moranis in a commercial earlier this year, wrote: ‘Should have known not to subject Rick to the year 2020. Glad to hear he’s okay.’ 

And Chris Evans tweeted: ‘My blood is boiling. Find this man. You don’t touch Rick Moranis.’

Celebrities including Ryan Reynolds and Chris Evens tweeted about their anger over the vicious attack and well-wishes to Moranis

Celebrities including Ryan Reynolds and Chris Evens tweeted about their anger over the vicious attack and well-wishes to Moranis

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