Long Beach police have identified a man arrested in connection with the death of a 63-year-old woman, who was allegedly beaten with a ride-share scooter, as 27-year-old Amad Rashad Redding.
Authorities say the Long Beach resident attacked the woman, identified as Rosa Elena Hernandez, with an electric scooter at around 12:30 p.m. Monday in the 6400 block of Obispo Avenue in North Long Beach. She had been walking east on 64th Street toward Obispo near Ramona Park when Redding ran up to her and assaulted her, police said.
“The investigation is still ongoing so it is not known whether the suspect and victim were known to each other,” said police spokeswoman Shaunna Dandoy.
Anita Reese, 52, said she and her neighbors didn’t know Redding or recognize him when surveillance video depicting his arrest was broadcast on local television stations. She lives around the corner from where the assault took place, and said it’s normally a quiet area where people regularly take strolls and walk their pets.
Hernandez’s friends said they had no idea why anyone would want to hurt her. Nearby resident Jeff Johnson described her as a kind woman who traded food and plants from her garden with her neighbors. He said she often would walk down the street to pick up groceries and visit relatives in the area.
“We’ve been neighbors for 30 years,” Johnson’s wife, Susana, said. “She’s been collecting our mail, our packages and watching our house when we’re not there; just watching out for everyone.”
Members of the community sporadically visited the intersection of Obispo and 64th on Tuesday to pay their respects to Hernandez. Some left flowers and lit candles while struggling to make sense of the violence.
“It’s kind of scary, but now I feel more sick than anything else,” Susana Johnson said. “If it wasn’t her, maybe it could have been one of our friends or our grandchildren.”
Initial reports from authorities indicated a bystander may have tried to help Hernandez before the suspect picked up a nearby Bird ride-share scooter and used it as a weapon, but that may not have been accurate.
“Preliminary information suggested a bystander may have intervened, however detectives have not discovered evidence to support that,” Dandoy said.
A Bird spokesman responding to a request for comment on the incident was unable to confirm if one of the company’s scooters was involved.
“We are deeply saddened by this act of violence and our hearts and thoughts go out to the victim and her family,” the company said in a statement. “We will work with local law enforcement to help with the investigation into this tragedy.”