Santa Monica city councilman attacked by homeless man on 3rd Street Promenade


A homeless man was captured on video attacking a Santa Monica city councilman at a popular shopping district on Sunday.

The attack happened on July 16 while Santa Monica city councilmember Phil Brock was walking with his girlfriend on 3rd Street Promenade, a busy shopping and dining area in Santa Monica.

Brock said he saw the suspect, a 20-year-old man, ripping signs off storefronts when he approached him to ask that he properly dispose of the signs instead of littering.

Moments later as Brock was speaking with local police officers, he said the suspect came after him and attacked him.

“I saw a gentleman on the 1300 block of the promenade tearing signs off a storefront,” Brock recalled. “He was throwing them on the ground. As I walked by, I said, ‘Hey, can you put those in the trash can?’”

When Brock began cleaning up and throwing the signs away, that’s when he said the suspect approached him and began shouting obscenities.

During the confrontation, which was caught on video, Brock said the suspect tried to steal the hat he was wearing three times before successfully grabbing it. The suspect also allegedly shoved Brock and tossed an unidentified liquid at him and his girlfriend.

“I turned to walk away. He took a bottle of some sort of liquid and threw it on me,” Brock said. “Made a second throw and doused Kathryn [his girlfriend] as well. We called 911.”

Brock said he followed the suspect as he attempted to flee the area while on the call with police.

At one point, the suspect tripped and fell down. At that point, Brock was able to hold the suspect down until officers arrived.

Video of the incident shows the suspect handcuffed and seated on the ground as worried bystanders looked on.

The suspect’s records revealed he had been released twice from Los Angeles County jail on felony charges just a few days before the Santa Monica attack.

The latest arrest marks the suspect’s third felony arrest in just two-and-a-half weeks.

“I hope that person gets help and I hope that L.A. County provides that help through the judicial system.”

Brock says Santa Monica could always use more help at the federal, state and county levels to effectively tackle the ongoing homelessness crisis.

“We’re facing this tremendous burden ourselves,” he said. “Up to 1,000 homeless people on our streets every day. It’s impossible for us to have enough police, enough homeless street resources to assist properly.”

The suspect is currently being held on a 5150 hold and was booked on charges of battery and grand theft.

“5150 is the number of the section of the Welfare and Institutions Code, which allows an adult who is experiencing a mental health crisis to be involuntarily detained for a 72-hour psychiatric hospitalization when evaluated to be a danger to others, or to himself or herself, or gravely disabled,” according to the Orange County Health Care Agency.


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