Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


85-Year-Old Brutally Beaten Near Downtown Whole Foods Dies

Support your source for local news!
Today, put a dollar value on the trustworthy reporting you rely on all year long. The local news you read here every day is crafted for you, but right now, we need your help to keep it going. In these uncertain times, your support is even more important. We can't hold those in power accountable and uplift voices from the community without your partnership. Thank you.

An elderly man who was brutally beaten by a homeless man in downtown over a week ago has died.

Dong Yul Lee, 85, died Monday morning at 6 a.m. from his injuries in the attack on the afternoon of April 2nd near 7th and Olive, according to NBC Los Angeles.

LaFawn Parker, 46, is accused of punching Lee, kicking him and then stomping on his head in an apparently unprovoked attack. Waltay Simmons, a security guard across the street at Whole Foods, interrupted the beating by tackling and pepper-spraying Parker, then holding him until police arrived. Gruesome photos and video from the scene show Lee lying in a pool of his own blood. Parker is facing a murder charge now that Lee has died, authorities told City News Service.

Lee was trying to get some fresh air when Parker began attacking him, authorities say. They suspect that Parker is mentally ill.

Support for LAist comes from

Kirk Gaw told CBS Los Angeles that he was grocery shopping when he witnessed the attack. He said, "[The suspect] chased the man out of the restaurant and then raced toward the senior citizen—the victim—and knocked him over and started stomping on his head. He was yelling that, 'Koreans are raping me.'"

Los Angeles' nearby Skid Row has been called an "outdoor asylum without walls." The city has pledged $100 million to eradicate homelessness but a city report says we'd need closer to $2 billion.

"A guy without his medicine and a victim who was in the wrong place at the wrong time," Simmons previously told NBC Los Angeles. "I think both of them were victims, really."

Gaw says his neighbor will be missed, "He was a neighborhood fixture who liked to stand in front of his apartment building and enjoy his neighborhood and the progress here and the historic core."

Most Read