elderly asian man assaulted by four teenagers

Just received this horrifying news about a brutal attack on an elderly man, 70-year-old John Ming Tan, who was assaulted, robbed and pushed into a dry river by four teenage boys: 4 Teenage Boys Allegedly Beat, Rob Elderly Man.

It happened in broad daylight. Tan was riding his bike along the dry river bed near Lashbrook Park. He was approached by a teeanger who asked him if he had any money, then pushed him down the embankment, where three more boys punched and kicked him. Tan was beaten so badly, he's still under observation at the hospital.

The incident has been a traumatic shock to Tan's family. Here's a letter that was forwarded along to me, written by Vivian H. Wong, the victim's granddaughter:
September 9, 2009

To Whom It May Concern:

I'm writing today to inform you of an incident that occurred on September 9, 2009 at approximately 6:30PM in El Monte, CA. On this day, my 70 year old grandfather, John Ming Tang, was pushed into the dry San Gabriel River and brutally beaten by 4 teenage boys.

Although much of the Asian community prefers to remain silent to save face, today's incident was not an isolated case.

My grandparents have been residents of the city of El Monte for the last 23 years. Over the course of this time, my grandfather has made a habit of going on daily walks and bike rides. His routes vary from the streets of El Monte to the walkway along the San Gabriel River. Approximately 10 years ago, a similar incident occurred to my grandfather. As he was leisurely riding his bike along the San Gabriel River, he was violently shoved off of his bike and the bike was stolen. Although the incident was reported to the El Monte Police Department, nothing came out of it.

With the addition of the Lashbrook Park along the San Gabriel River, the river sees more and more elderly visitors. Crimes against the elderly along the San Gabriel River have become more frequent over the years. More recently, friends of my grandmother's have been victims of lewd sexual crimes. Just last year, one of my grandmother's 78 year old friends was strolling along the San Gabriel River when she proceeded to go under a bridge. There she was greeted by her attacker who attempted to molest and rape her. She managed to escape and due to embarrassment, the crime was never reported. Just last week, another one of my grandmother's elderly friends was walking along the San Gabriel River and as she went under a bridge, she was groped by a drunken assailant. Once again, due to embarrassment, the crime was never reported.

Today, September 9, 2009, at 6:30PM my grandfather was once again riding his bike along the San Gabriel River. As he proceeded to bike under a bridge, he was stopped by four teenage thugs. These four teenagers demanded money from him and although my grandfather had none on him, he was violently shoved off of his bike, down a steep cement slope, and into the dry San Gabriel River. As if that act of violence was not enough, they continued on to shove him to the floor and shamelessly and inhumanely kicked, punched, and attacked an unarmed and helpless 70 year old man, walking away with only his cell phone. Luckily, my grandfather was still able to pull his bloodied body out of the San Gabriel River and make the 3 minute walk home. There, my family dialed 911 and filed a report with the El Monte Police Department. The barbaric attack has resulted in stitches on my grandfather’s face and head as well as numerous contusions and lacerations to his body. As of this writing, he is currently in the emergency room at the Greater El Monte Hospital going through x-rays. The full extent of his injuries are still unknown at this moment.

The grief, confusion, shock, and anger that my family has endured over the last few hours cannot be described. I cannot even begin to understand what would drive four teenagers to commit such a vicious act of violence against an elderly man.

Publicity for this incident will bring about awareness for the dangers that threaten our elderly citizens in El Monte and the silent Asian community. I also hope that with some publicity, this case will not fall through the cracks due to lack of personnel or funding and that this case will be seen through.


Vivian H. Wong
As the letter frighteningly points out, this isn't an isolated incident. A number of elderly residents have also been harassed and attacked while taking walks in the area. The police are apparently aware of the issue, but little has actually been done about it.

The attackers were described as four Latino boys of about 15 or 16 years old. One of them wore a white t-shirt, black shorts and long white socks. They were last seen running east on Cortada Street, Batres said. Anyone who has any information about this incident should call the El Monte Police Department.

Let me just say, what the fuck is wrong with people? Who does something like this? And what's being done to make sure these little teen shits are brought to justice? More here: Elderly man beaten, robbed in El Monte.

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