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News

Good Samaritan Who Protected A Child In A Restaurant Near The ArcLight Dies

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Police asking for the public's help to find a man who attacked and ultimately killed a Good Samaritan at a Hollywood fast food restaurant. The man died almost a month after the attack from his injuries. On June 18 at about 9:35 p.m., Gabriel Ortega, 57, was inside a fast food restaurant in the 1400 block of Vine St. in Hollywood near the ArcLight, a release from the LAPD says. (It's not clear which fast food restaurant.) He saw a man yelling at a small child. When the man began to approach the child with clenched fists, Ortega jumped in the middle and told the man to leave the child alone. The man then punched Ortega and ran.

Ortega checked himself into the hospital three days later, but died as a result of his injuries nearly a month later on July 14. The L.A. Coroner's office said the cause of death was blunt force trauma.

The suspect is described as an African American male, 30 to 40 years old. Anyone with information should called Detectives Robledo or Rivas at 213-382-9470, or 1-877-527-3247 on nights and weekends. Anonymous tipsters can provide information using Crime Stoppers (1-800-222-8477) or online at www.lapdonline.org.

Update, Tuesday, August 5, 8:30 a.m.: Jeremy Harris, 36, has been arrested and charged with voluntary manslaughter, according to a release by the L.A. County District Attorney. Harris is said to be homeless, and he and the child are not related. Police say that Harris punched Ortega several times in the face and head, and that Ortega went to the hospital after experiencing severe headaches and vomiting in the days that followed the attack.