Officers with the Los Angeles Police Department arrested a 57-year-old man in connection with a tenants’ rights protest in Boyle Heights where police and protestors clashed, leaving several officers injured, officials announced Thursday.
The organized march happened on Oct. 1 at Hollenbeck Park where thousands of tenants campaigning against a proposed 9% rent increase in rent-controlled apartments gathered.
According to police, several members of the group were engaging in criminal conduct requiring officers to intervene.
“As Los Angeles Police Department Hollenbeck officers attempted to initiate the arrest for the criminal activity, several members of the crowd engaged in a violent altercation with officers attempting to free the individual under arrest,” an LAPD news release stated.
Authorities claim that the primary suspect in the scuffle, later identified as Gustavo Otzoy, forcibly removed both personal and department property from a uniformed officer and during the chaos of the incident was able to escape arrest.
LAPD also released an image taken from an officer’s body-worn camera that they say shows the 57-year-old grabbing the officer, though neither the suspect’s nor the officer’s face are in the photograph.
Otzoy was arrested on Oct. 3 for robbery. Authorities did not provide details about any additional evidence that may link the suspect to the photograph, nor did they say if the officer’s property was discovered in his possession.
The 57-year-old’s bail was set at $50,000 and he remains in custody.
“The actions by members of the crowd to disrupt the arrest resulted in injuries to seven different officers,” the release added.
On Oct. 5, the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office charged Otzoy with one count of felony resisting arrest.
LAPD’s Major Crime Division is continuing to investigate additional crimes related to the incident.