Police are seeking five people who allegedly attacked a street vendor on a Bronx sidewalk earlier this week, beating him until he was in critical condition.

The incident occurred on May 2nd, at 5 p.m., near East 149th Street and Third Avenue. The 52-year-old vendor was approached by the group who "punched him in the head and face numerous times. When the victim fell to the floor unconscious the individuals continued to assault him."

Apparently the assault was sparked when one of the suspects tried to take a purse without paying earlier in the day, and the vendor objected and prevented the theft. The group reportedly returned to confront the vendor.

The victim was hospitalized with a fractured skull and bleeding in the brain. He is in critical condition.

The suspects fled south on Third Avenue. They are all described as being in their 20s. Police say the first suspect was last seen wearing a red baseball cap, a red hooded sweater and blue jeans; the second suspect had glasses and was last seen wearing a black baseball cap, a black t-shirt and black jeans; the third suspect was last seen wearing a white t-shirt, blue shorts and black sneakers; the fourth had glasses and was last seen wearing a gray t-shirt and red pants; and the fifth was last seen wearing a pink baseball cap, a pink sweater and black jeans.

Police released surveillance footage of the attack:

A witness who filmed the attack told WABC 7, "I don't know if [one of the suspects] was offended by something [the vendor] said but he started screaming, 'I'm from around here, I'm from around here.' And then like a couple seconds later I just heard him yell, 'Right now, right now!' And then that's when he ran across the street and came back with about four or five of his buddies right there."

The witness continued, "In the beginning, [the vendor] got knocked down to the floor, the victim, and then he got right back up and that's when the dude in the red sweater knocked him out in one punch, and that's when everyone else gave him like two haymakers right there, and he didn't move after that."

Apparently others who saw the attack were too scared to intervene, the witness said. "Honestly everybody was so terrified they didn't even dare to get close to that group after they started beating the guy up, but as soon as they were gone everybody ran and started helping the guy."

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.