A woman was arrested on Tuesday night in Willowbrook, California, after a 91-year-old Mexican man was brutally beaten with a concrete brick in an allegedly racist attack, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.
A witness told The Washington Post that a black woman pushed Rodolfo Rodriguez to the ground on July 4 and hit him. She reportedly yelled at the man, "Go back to your country."
Several other people were also involved in the assault, according to the Post's witness, Misbel Borjas, who was driving by when she saw the incident.
Los Angeles resident Laquisha Jones, 30, was arrested after being identified from a picture Borjas took, the sheriff's department said. She was charged with assault with a deadly weapon and is being held in lieu of $200,000 (~R2.67-million) bail.
Law enforcement officers have not located the weapon, and investigators are still determining if there were other attackers involved.
Rodriguez was hospitalised for his injuries and is currently recovering at home. He suffered a broken jaw and cheekbone, two broken ribs and severe bruising, according to his family.
The elderly man was born in Mexico but is a permanent resident of the U.S.. He was out for his daily walk when the woman attacked him for no reason, Rodriguez told CNN. The woman then recruited a group of men to join the beating by telling them that Rodriguez was trying to steal her daughter, who was with her during the attack, Rodriguez said.
A GoFundMe campaign started by Rodiguez's family to pay for his medical expenses had raised $248,307 (~R3.31-million) — far exceeding the $15,000 (~R200,000) goal — as of Wednesday morning.