In the latest sign that the continues to be a dangerous—and arguably under-policed—place, a teenage boy has been arrested on suspicion of assaulting a woman with a dangerous weapon.
The incident occurred in the afternoon of Monday, Oct. 24, and the suspect was booked for assault shortly thereafter, according to Lt. Mike Menza, the watch commander at the LAPD Northeast Community Station.
Lt. Menza said he did not have details of the alleged assault because the suspect was arrested by the General Services Police (of the Los Angeles Department of General Services) and produced before him at the Northeast Station as a matter of protocol so that he could be sent to jail pending charges and possible prosecution.
A media relations spokesperson for the Department of Recreation and Parks, Andrea Epstein, described the alleged assault as an “isolated incident” and referred Eagle Rock Patch’s request on Wednesday for details to a watch commander at the General Services’ Office of Public Safety (OPS).
The OPS watch commander, Robert Payan, said he had not heard of the incident and that he would try to get details from a supervisor or an officer familiar with the case.
In an email communication with Eagle Rock Patch, President Michael Larsen quoted a friend of the victim as well as Area Director Zenay Loera as saying that a man grabbed the victim, a woman in her 30s, near the park’s rear exit facing Addison Way, and threatened her by putting a knife to her neck.
The woman managed to flee and alerted the recreation center’s staff. The suspect was arrested and turned over to the General Services Police, Larsen added.
Yosemite Park Director Celia Mann told Eagle Rock Patch that she is “not permitted to say anything” about the incident—not even whether or not she was at the recreation center at the time. She referred inquiries to OPS Senior Lead Officer Joseph Orlanes—and Eagle Rock Patch is waiting to hear back from him as well as from OPS Watch Commander Payan.
In February, a group of teenage boys brutally assaulted a jogger with their skateboards in Yosemite Park, near an area frequently targeted by graffiti taggers. The incident was covered widely in the local media amid assurances at a news conference at the Northeast Community Station that the recreation center would be better policed.
In June, less than two months after the Department of Recreation and Parks installed a second surveillance camera to monitor taggers at Yosemite Park, a young suspect beat up an Eagle Rock man after a basketball game at the recreation center.