A homeless man was arrested on Tuesday after brutally beating and robbing a man in Santa Monica while he was walking through Palisades Park. Residents are worried about the escalating crime and rising homeless population in the beach town.
Santa Monica police officers responded to a report of a battery in Palisades Park around 3:30 p.m. When they arrived, they found the victim, public safety advocate John Alle, on the ground suffering from injuries to his face and head.
Alle says that while he was walking through Palisades Park, he was knocked out cold by a homeless man. He says he woke up in an ambulance while being transported to UCLA Medical Center with his jaw broken in two places, two broken teeth, and a concussion.
“I’m horrified,” said Santa Monica City Councilman Phil Brock in response to the attack. “I’m horrified by any violence against any resident any business owner or visitor to our city.”
Alle was taking pictures with his cell phone, which he feels illustrates the public safety threat related to Santa Monica being inundated with homeless people. Many of his images also show signs of drug abuse.
“In Santa Monica, a significant amount is drug abuse,” Councilman Brock said. “If you look at the rap sheets of some of the people that are committing these crimes, they are repeat offenders over the years.”
The suspect, Tyler Jordan Keating, 34, became angry and demanded Alle to stop taking pictures before striking him in the face and knocking him to the ground. He allegedly took Alle’s phone and wallet and fled the scene.
Authorities located Keating, along with Alle’s phone nearby. He was arrested for felony battery, robbery, and elder abuse and booked into the Santa Monica Jail where he is being held.
Alle who is involved in real estate, owns several properties on the Third Street Promenade. One of his properties has a sign that says, “Santa Monica is not safe.” Councilman Brock says the city is trying to change that.
“We are adding seven more police,” he said. “We deployed more police in our downtown and throughout the city. Frankly, it’s not enough. We have to do more and the county and the state have to do more.”
The councilman says that in addition to more police officers, they have hired a new security company called Covered 6 that operates in Beverly Hills and is expected to provide more safety for Santa Monica residents.