An assault on an elderly Korean woman that went viral on Facebook is not being investigated as hate crime

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They're probably not investigating this case as a hate crime because the attacker was mentally impaired, but given the circumstances...

An 83-year-old Korean woman was assaulted in Koreatown on Wednesday afternoon in an attack that became the subject of a viral social media post, which said the assailant had yelled “white power” before fleeing.

But none of the witnesses to the assault told investigators that they heard the suspect, who is now in custody, make racial remarks, said Sgt. Randy Espinoza of the Los Angeles Police Department. The attack is not being investigated as a hate crime, he said.

Officers were called to the corner of Western Avenue and Council Street around 2:30 p.m. Wednesday on report of a battery. A witness told officers that the suspect punched the elderly woman in the back of her head, causing her to fall to the ground, according to Espinoza. 

The victim suffered a one-inch cut to her left cheek as a result of the fall and had pain in her knee, Espinoza said. Police said it was not immediately clear what motivated the attack. 

The suspect, 27, was booked on suspicion of battery and was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail. She gave her name as Patty Garcia, but fingerprints identified her as Alexis Duvall, Espinoza said. 

The sergeant said the suspect appeared to be under the influence or mentally ill, and said she was homeless. She yelled obscenities at officers as she was being booked at the LAPD’s Olympic Station, Espinoza said.

Seng Vongphrachanh, a Koreatown resident who arrived at the scene immediately after the assault but didn’t see the attack, said Duvall repeatedly yelled “power is power” and the N-word as he and another man chased after her. Duvall seemed “out of it,” said Vongphrachanh. He said he gave detectives the same account. 

In a post that was shared by thousands Wednesday evening and Thursday morning, Facebook user Linda Lee said she was a friend of a witness and wrote that the assailant yelled “white power” and ran off.

You can read the rest at the Los Angeles Times.

 

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