FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 6, 2014
Contact: Jay Moroso, Sergeant
On December 11, 2013 at 10:15 pm, police responded to an assault in the 300 block of Santa Monica Boulevard. The victim told responding officers that he was assaulted while walking westbound on the north sidewalk after the subject approached him, cursed at him, and tried to instigate a fight with him. The victim, who was with a friend, told officers that he did not want to fight the subject, so he and his friend continued walking west on Santa Monica Boulevard. The subject followed them and "sucker punched" the victim from behind, knocking him to the ground. A witness told responding officers, the suspect walked across the street and stood there until the police started to arrive, at which time he fled. The victim sustained a one and a half inch laceration above his right eye and was treated, on-scene, by paramedics.
Officers searched the area and were not able to immediately locate the assailant. On December 12, 2013, at approximately 1:20 am, officers located a person in the area of 4th Street and Wilshire Boulevard that matched the description of the suspect involved in the assault. He made statements indicating that he may have been involved in the assault and was found to have a warrant issued for his arrest. Officers arrested the suspect for the warrant and detectives are awaiting a visual confirmation from the victim of the assault before charging the suspect with the assault.
Information was released to the press indicating that this incident was the result of a type of an assault called, "The Knockout Game" in which unsuspecting victims are punched from behind, without provocation, in an attempt to knock them out. The police investigation revealed that this was not the case in this assault; in that words were exchanged by both parties prior to the attack. Information was also released to the press indicating that police officers stood by after the assault while the suspect was 30 feet away from them, yet they did not arrest the assailant. Police arrived on scene to find that the subject had already fled the area. Despite the fact that the assailant fled, officers continued to search for him and arrested a suspect 3 hours after the assault. Investigators are waiting to hear back from the victim to get a visual confirmation from him that the person they arrested is in fact, the suspect.
Anyone with information regarding this assault is asked to contact Detective Soto at (310) 458-8218 or the Santa Monica Police Department (24 hours) at (310) 458-8495
If you wish to remain anonymous, you can call WeTip at 1-800-78-CRIME (1-800-78-27463), or submit the tip online at www.wetip.com. You will remain completely anonymous and may be eligible for a reward up to $1,000.00, if your information leads to an arrest and conviction.