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4.19.2010

random street assault leaves man in grave condition

This is some shocking news out of Oakland about 59-year-old Tian Sheng Yu, who was brutally assaulted in broad daylight last week while trying to defend his son's honor -- "a brutal and random attack" that has left him on life support: Son describes Oakland assault that left father near death.
Tian Sheng Yu was punched once in the mouth by an unknown assailant and fell to the ground, hitting his head, said his son, Jin Cheng Yu, 27, who witnessed the blow.

"It happened so fast," the younger Yu said Saturday afternoon in front of his home in San Francisco's Portola district, where he stood still wearing pants splattered with blood, his left eye badly swollen from the unprovoked blow. His father was listed in grave condition and was in intensive care at an Oakland hospital.
It apparently all started when two young men walked up to Jin Cheng Yu on the street in downtown Oakland and slugged him in the eye "for no reason." When his father found out what happened, they went looking for the suspected assailants and confronted them, wanting to know what happened:
"My father asked them in Chinese - his English isn't very good - 'Why do you beat my son?' They didn't say anything. Then one of them punched my father in the mouth. He fell backwards to the ground."

The suspects then turned to the son. Jin Cheng Yu said they punched him "four or five times." He said he tried to hit back, but kept missing. Jin Cheng Yu had never been in a fight before.

Witnesses called 911. One of those callers was Jean Van Fleet. She saw the attack through the front window of her bookstore, Bibliomania, across the street. A passer-by yelled into the store for her to call police, and when Van Fleet looked outside she thought she saw three young men beating up someone else.

She was on the phone with the 911 dispatcher for only two or three minutes she said, and when she turned back to the street, the young men were gone and Yu was on the ground. His face was bloody and his body was convulsing.
According to police, a motive for the attack has not been determined. Neither Tian Sheng Yu or his son were robbed. It doesn't make any sense -- yet another Asian person randomly assaulted on the street. And this time, it has put a man in intensive care.

The first assailant is described as a black male teenager with a medium to dark complexion, short hair, 5 feet 7 inches tall, weighing 120-130 pounds and wearing a black "Raiders-like jacket." The second suspect is a black male 17 to 20 years old with a medium to dark complexion, short hair, 5 feet 9 inches to 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighing 150-160 pounds and wearing a maroon shirt.

According to Oakland police, homicide investigators have been called in to help with the probe because of the severity of the assault. Anyone with information is asked to call (510) 238-3821. More here, with video: Man on life support after attack, suspects sought.