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Brutal beating at South Bay bus stop may be hate crime

Posted at 6:21 PM, Nov 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-18 22:13:33-05

Surveillance video shows how a vicious attack unfolded at a Chula Vista bus stop, an attack police say may have been motivated by hate.

The incident started with a man in his late thirties getting on a city bus near Sharp in Chula Vista. In the surveillance video, you can see the man at the back of the bus, his face blurred. In his line of sight - another passenger.

“The victim is looking out the window past the suspect, orienting himself where he's at and where to get off,” said Chula Vista Police Lt. Fritz Reber.

Police say that the suspicious man believed the other passenger was looking at him - and it made him angry enough to confront his fellow passenger.

“Yelling at him, and said something that kind of gave him an indication that his sexual orientation had something to do with what was upsetting the suspect,” said Lt. Reber.

Police say the man being yelled at stayed quiet and looked forward. At the final stop - the H Street Trolley Station - he got off the bus.

But when he turned around, he was again face-to-face with the angry passenger. That's when the angry passenger started punching him.

Police say for the next minute the victim was punched and kicked - and no one stepped in to help him.

The victim suffered a fractured eye socket, requiring several surgeries. He was so traumatized, he didn't want police to go public for the last year and a half.

Police are now hoping new leads will help them track down the stranger on the bus.

“When you have violence come out of nowhere, it's a concerning for police and for the community,” said Lt. Reber.

The victim is still suffering the effects of the attack, including pain and headaches.

If you have any information on the case, call Crimestoppers at 888-580-8477.