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News Release

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Media Relations

LAPD Protects Homeless from Attempted Murder Suspects

Los AngelesTwo men have been arrested for the attempted murder of homeless people in the downtown area of Los Angeles.

At about 2:00 a.m., on August 16, Gerald McHenry walked into Central Station and reported he was the victim of an assault.  Mr. McHenry is a 38-year-old male Black who is homeless.  He had been sleeping on the sidewalk near the intersection of 9th and Wall Streets when he felt something strike him on the arm.  Mr. McHenry awoke and saw a male suspect walking away from him with a baseball bat in his hands.  The suspect entered a small white Dodge and left in an unknown direction.  Mr. McHenry had swelling to his left forearm.  Officers completed a report and began to search the area for suspects.

At about 3:30 a.m., a private security guard from ADT Security Corporation was on patrol in the area of 3rd and Flower Streets when he saw two male suspects beating a homeless individual with bats.

The two suspects, later identified as William Orantes, 19 years old, of Inglewood, a male Hispanic, 5’8”, 190 lbs., and Justin Brumfield, 19 years old, of Los Angeles, a male Black, 5’6”, 148 lbs., were armed with aluminum baseball bats and standing over Ernest Adams.  According to witnesses, Orantes and Brumfield were beating Adams about the head with the bats.  The security guard shone his light on the suspects, at which time they entered a light colored Toyota and left.  The security guard followed the suspects and called the police.

LAPD Central Division Officers Prude and Ferreira responded to the call, searched the area and arrested the suspects.  The officers also recovered two full-size aluminum baseball bats and a replica firearm.

Mr. Adams was transported to USCMC with severe head trauma and is in critical condition.

The suspects told Investigating Officer Elizabeth Avila that they had seen the DVD “Bum Fights” and thought it would be fun to do some “bum bashing” of their own.  The investigation is ongoing and it is anticipated that the suspects will be booked for attempted murder.

Anyone with information on this crime is asked to call Central Detectives at 213-972-1203. During off hours and on weekends, call the 24-hour Detective Information Desk toll free at 1-877-LAWFULL (1-877-529-3855).