SANTA MONICA—The Santa Monica Police Department is looking for a suspect who attacked a 6-year-old girl on Sunday, March 10.

Canyon News received an email from Lt. Erika Aklufi of the SMPD who indicated the incident transpired at 7 p.m. on March 10.

A male (not confirmed as homeless) was sitting on a bus bench at Main Street and Marine
Avenue acting erratically. A 6-year-old child and her parents were walking
northbound on Main Street behind the bench when the suspect spun around and
struck the child causing her to fall to the ground.

Authorities indicated the child was not seriously injured. The suspect, described as a Black male, approximately 6 feet and 1 inches tall and between 30-35 years old, wearing a black jacket and blue jeans, fled the location northbound on Main Street and out of sight. He was not apprehended.

There was no warning before the incident transpired. The suspect then got up and started screaming. The girl and her family were visiting Santa Monica from the East Coast. The city of Santa Monica recently started a Homeless Liaison Program aimed at addressing the issue of homelessness in the region.

“An incident like this one is an affront to public safety and will not be
tolerated. Even more so that a child was involved. Any crime committed in
Santa Monica is a crime too many; our department stands strong in the
face of anyone who chooses to victimize those who are in this city. Our
detectives are working hard to uncover more details of the incident and
identify and apprehend the suspect.

We appreciate our partnership with our community, relying on our
residents, business owners and visitors to provide us with information about
criminal behavior. We continue our specialized uniformed deployments on
Main Street and in our Downtown area. Our goal is to be proactive and
present, providing safety and security to our residents and visitors.

In addition, we are deploying our Homeless Liaison Program Team of police
officers and a mental health clinician to provide much needed resources to
those experiencing homelessness. Our efforts, combined with the Therapeutic Transport Team and the Salvation Army, provide us a platform to redouble our efforts to connect individuals with treatment and shelter,” said Chief Ramon Batista in a statement.

The SMPD is asking anyone with information related to the suspect or incident to
contact Detective Diaz and, Detective Sergeant
Goodwin at, or the Watch Commander (24
hours) at 310-458-8427.