An 85-year-old man who was brutally beaten on a downtown Los Angeles sidewalk during broad daylight died Monday from his injuries.
Dong Yul Lee was walking the afternoon of April 2 at 7th and Olive streets, a stretch of downtown near popular bars, restaurants, and a Whole Foods. Lee was approached by a man identified as 46-year-old LaFawn Parker, who punched him in the face for an unknown reason, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.
Parker walked away, then turned around and charged at Lee, police said. He stomped on Lee and kicked him in the head several times, rendering him unconscious, police said.
A security guard across the street saw the beating, and ran over. He followed Parker as he fled, ultimately pepper spraying him and detaining him until officers arrived.
Lee was taken to a hospital in critical condition. He died there Monday morning, police said.
Parker was arrested and later charged with attempted murder, along with an enhancement for elder abuse. Police said they would be refiling their case to prosecutors, who could now charge Parker with murder.
The security guard, Waltay Simmons, spoke with NBC 4 after the attack. He said he pepper sprayed Parker after the man tried to attack him as well. Parker is believed to be mentally ill, ABC 7 reported.
"A guy without his medicine and a victim who was in the wrong place at the wrong time," Simmons told NBC 4. "I think both of them were victims, really."
Claudia Koerner is a national reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Los Angeles.
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