Store employee attacked with baseball bat

A Merced County man was hospitalized this week on a mental-health hold after he was accused of beating a store clerk with a baseball bat.

Timothy Morrison, 31, was arrested Monday on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and vandalism after he allegedly beat a clerk at the Family Market on Lander Avenue in Hilmar, the Merced County Sheriff’s Department reported.

Morrison was released from custody Wednesday, according to jail records, but it was unclear if he remained hospitalized.

The clerk, whose name was not released, was not seriously injured, Deputy Delray Shelton said.

Investigators believe Morrison had been bothering store employees in the days leading up to Monday’s alleged attack, including at least one incident that was not immediately reported to deputies.

Morrison allegedly smashed at least one store window Monday and an employee came outside with a baseball bat to intervene, Shelton said.

Shelton said Morrison allegedly took the bat from the employee and attacked him.

Several people standing outside surrounded Morrison and defended the employee until sheriff’s deputies arrived. Morrison suffered minor cuts and bruises during the altercation, deputies said.