He may only be 11 years old, but police in California say one of the suspects in an attack on an elderly Asian man already has an extensive criminal history.
According to KGO-TV in San Francisco, the boy is one of two suspects arrested in the attack last Saturday. Both are minors and, as such, unidentified; the other young man arrested is 17.
The victim, an 80-year-old Asian man, is also unidentified.
According to SFGate, police said the man was walking in a residential area in the East Bay community of San Leandro last weekend when he was assaulted by two young men, who shoved him to the ground and demanded his wallet.
In a video shared on social media, the elderly man can be heard screaming for help, as the two young men try to wrestle the man’s FitBit fitness tracker off of his arm. A third teen, who apparently wasn’t part of the incident, can be seen watching the robbery as it takes place.
As the elderly man cries for help, laughter can be heard.
WARNING: The following video contains graphic language that some viewers will find offensive.
As if hearing an 80-year old man cry out for help after getting knocked to the ground in San Leandro isn’t bad enough…
…the suspects are teens as young as 16 and you can hear one laughing loudly.
— Dion Lim (@DionLimTV) May 10, 2021
Police originally identified the suspects as being between the ages of 16 and 19; they escaped in a blue Subaru. The victim only suffered minor injuries.
According to KGO, the suspects were arrested Wednesday afternoon.
“We are thankful that we were able to capture these juveniles safely and expeditiously,” San Leandro Police Department Lt. Ali Khan said.
Sources told KGO that the 11-year-old boy has an “extensive criminal history,” which includes reports of at least two prior robbery sprees.
Furthermore, on April 12, he was arrested on robbery and carjacking allegations.
And the attack on the elderly Asian man wasn’t the crime the suspects are alleged to have committed last Saturday. Just two hours prior, police say the two suspects may have been involved in a separate incident on Wednesday involving an alleged robbery that involved strong-arming a woman and taking her purse.
The 11-year-old was released to the custody of his mother, sources say.
The attack raises several uncomfortable questions beyond the handling of juvenile suspects in the criminal justice system.
It’s unclear from the video of the 80-year-old Asian man being attacked whether there was any racial animus on top of the mugging. However, KGO reported the victim believed the mugging to be a hate crime.
The attack happened in an area of the world not known as a covert hive of rabid Donald Trump supporters who saw the red mist of race-hate descend the moment they heard the former president utter the words “China virus.”
Furthermore, the two were likely too young to understand the political atmosphere that the left says created this rash of anti-Asian sentiment.
This would, of course, be a superfluity in any other situation. The suspects have been arrested, they’ll hopefully face a fair trial and be brought to justice and the victim is physically uninjured. However, this is another crime that’ll be used to play into a narrative that simply doesn’t exist. As Ryan Girdusky noted in a piece at the Washington Examiner in March, the numbers don’t support a Trump-initiated wave of violence against Asian-Americans.
“According to the Justice Department, 27.5% of all violent crimes against Asian Americans in 2018 were committed by black people. That’s over 50,000 incidents in a single year,” Girdusky wrote.
“White criminals and Asian criminals each accounted for 24.1% of all attacks on Asians. Asian people, similar to their white counterparts, are underrepresented in violent crimes committed to the proportion of the population they make up. In 2019, Asians made up 6.2% of the population but just 1% of the perpetrators of violent crime. White people are 62% of the population but commit 50% of violent crimes.”
If this was a hate crime, that hate likely sprang from structural enmity that existed long before COVID-19.
Whatever the case, we don’t know what the motive for this attack is yet — even though it’s being squeezed into a preexisting storyline that is absent of definitive facts.
What we can say is that this is one more sordid attack in a year that’s seen far too many of them already.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.