Los Angeles: Los Angeles police officers arrested a 17-year-old gang member for the brutal stabbing of a homeless man last Saturday on Los Angeles Street.
“Turns out this was a random act of violence,” said Lt. Paul Vernon, who heads up detective operations for downtown. “This 17-year-old was working overtime to establish himself as an enforcer with his gang.”
Last Saturday afternoon, the sidewalk on Los Angeles Street, near 5th Street, was packed with weekend and Mother’s Day shoppers when a group of men attacked another man in his thirties, beating him to the ground. “That’s when this 17-year-old stepped in and stabbed the victim over a dozen times,” Lt. Vernon said.
The victim is a homeless man, living on Skidrow after being thrown out of the house by his family for drug use and domestic violence. Doctors did not expect him to survive the attack, but now his prognosis is much improved.
Detectives received a number of anonymous tips from the neighborhood following the stabbing. These tips led detectives to the main suspect, who is on probation for Car Jacking, and was recently arrested after taking police on a pursuit in downtown. He was not detained.
Early this morning, around midnight, police officers assigned to the Central gang unit saw the 17 year old standing near 4th Street and Main Street, a block away from last weekend’s stabbing, and about a block away from where he had been arrested after the pursuit on Spring Street.
The juvenile was booked for Attempted Murder, and he is now being held at Eastlake Juvenile Hall. Juveniles are detained without bail.
“We’re still looking for other suspects in this attack,” Lt. Vernon explained. “One good thing to come out of this, we have been able to identify more members of the gang the suspect is associated with. Their brutal act has brought a lot of police attention on the block and on them. I hope this is the tipping point for more people to say ‘enough’ to their intimidation.”
Anyone with information about this incident is urged to call Central Division gang detectives at 213-972-1217. During non-business hours or weekends, calls may be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7. Anyone wishing to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800)-222-8477). Tipsters may also contact Crime Stoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most key pads) using a cell phone. All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.” Tipsters can also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on “web tips” and follow the prompts.