1 arrested in stabbing at anti-vaccine protest outside L.A. City Hall

Local news

One person was arrested Wednesday in connection with last month’s stabbing at a protest against vaccines outside Los Angeles City Hall, LAPD Chief Michel Moore announced on KTLA.

Officers arrested 30-year-old Eric Cohen of Long Beach in connection with the stabbing that took place on Aug. 14, after a fight broke out during the anti-vaccine demonstration near First and Spring streets, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

He is accused of using a knife or a sharp object to stab the victim once in the upper right chest area, LAPD said.

Cohen was booked on suspicion of attempted murder and is being held on $1 million bail.

Police previously released images of the assailant, now identified as Cohen, when he was being sought in connection with the City Hall attack. The person in the photos, who appeared to be holding a sharp object, was clad in black with his face and head covered with a hoodie and bandana.

LAPD also has images of a second person who appears to have been stabbed during the melee, but that victim has yet to step forward, according to the chief. No victims or witnesses have come forward in that second attack, police said.

Video from the protest shows punches being thrown as protesters and counterprotesters clashed. One man is later seen walking away with blood covering his face. Another man is also seen lying on the ground as LAPD officers provided aid.

“This anti-vax debate is manifesting itself in protests and demonstrations and violence in other parts of the country as well,” Moore said Thursday. “In Los Angeles, we’re not going to stand for it. Our arrest last night demonstrates that we’ll put whatever resources we need to identify those responsible for such violence and bring them to criminal justice system.”

The chief said he was thankful for members of the public who helped with identifying the suspect.

Detectives are asking anyone who may have additional information regarding Cohen to contact Detective Meesri at 213-486-7362.

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