He Was Taking a Walk. Then She Came With a Concrete Block

Suspect told 91-year-old Rodolfo Rodriguez 'go back to Mexico' as she struck him, witness says
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 10, 2018 9:45 AM CDT
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Awful.   (Getty Images/naropano)

(Newser) – A 91-year-old Mexican man went for a walk in California. Now "I can't walk anymore," Rodolfo Rodriguez tells CNN from his family's Los Angeles County home, where he's recovering from a broken jaw, broken cheekbones, two broken ribs, and plenty of bruises—the result of a heinous attack on the Fourth of July. Rodriguez—a permanent resident, per the Washington Post—says he was headed to a Willowbrook park when he passed a woman who "hit me until she was done." A witness describes hearing the woman say "go back to your country, go back to Mexico" as she repeatedly struck Rodriguez in the head with a concrete block. A group of men then joined in the beating, kicking Rodriguez and stomping his head, after the woman claimed the elderly man was trying to take her young daughter, who was present, Rodriguez says.

"That's not true. In the years I have been alive I have never offended anyone," Rodriguez continues, also denying bumping into the girl, as some media outlets reported. "There's no words to explain it," adds his grandson, who's launched a GoFundMe page to help pay for his grandfather's medical bills; more than $180,000 has been raised so far. "What kind of harm can he mean to anyone?" Per KTLA, Rodriguez was able to identify his attacker from video footage of the incident, which follows a 52% increase in anti-Hispanic and anti-Latino crimes in California in 2017, reports the Sacramento Bee. Police are now looking for a female suspect and three to four males. "We are concerned, especially with the type of crime they committed," says a sheriff's deputy, noting a 4-year-old child apparently witnessed the attack. "We can't have these kind of people … out in the streets."

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