Man who attacked woman 'for no reason' arrested

Posted at 5:49 AM, Sep 28, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-28 08:49:16-04

A 31-year-old man has been arrested in the attack of an Oceanside woman who was walking her dog under the pier.

The assault near the Oceanside Pier was reported about 7 p.m. Tuesday, according to police. The victim, who was found unconscious, was hospitalized with severe injuries, police Lt. Aaron Doyle said.

Cody said his mother was walking her dog under the pier when a stranger attacked her at random. He said someone hit her so hard it knocked her down and knocked her out.

"That's the most cowardly thing I could ever imagine another human doing," Cody said. "When she came to she didn't remember her name."

The attacker ran off, and the victim's dog, Edee, ran about a mile home.

"It was because this dog ran home and the neighbors saw the dog that they knew something was wrong and got in touch with me," Cody said.

Cody has been at his mom's side in the intensive care unit, and he said she has had a hard time remembering things.

"We have recently told her she was attacked," he explained. "She was repeating the same questions over and over for quite a while, including where my dad was. He passed away seven months ago, so that was kind of tough to listen to."

It was also tough to answer over and over how cancer killed him.

"I'm pretty over 2015," Cody said. "I'm ready for something to change."

Preliminary evidence suggested that the assailant, described as a black man in his 20s or early 30s with long dreadlocks, attacked the woman "for no apparent reason," according to Doyle.

Oceanside Police detectives identified the suspect as Isaac Pettigrew, 31. Police received calls Sunday morning regarding a person matching the description of Pettigrew last seen on the beach, near the pier.

Officers responded and located Pettigrew in the 200 block of South The Strand.

He was taken into custody and transported to the police department to be interviewed. Police have not yet determined a motive for the attack.