SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) — A case of street justice in a San Jose park could backfire for a group who confronted a man they accused of exposing himself to children in a park bathroom, with some angry parents possibly facing criminal charges.
The incident happened about 8:00 p.m. at Fowler Creek Park in the city’s Evergreen neighborhood.
A cellphone video of the incident shows a young man with a light beard giving a beating to a middle-aged man who doesn’t speak English.
The man throwing punches accuses the other man of exposing himself to his son who was apparently in the restroom a few minutes earlier.
In the video, the man is seen pleading to be let go, but instead he gets hit repeatedly. As the man receives more blows, a woman tells others in the crowd to call police.
The man tried to get away, but his escape was blocked by other young men who seem confused as to what to do next.
At that point, the bearded man takes one last swing and draws blood. Then the man is let go.
“Our assaults unit has viewed the video,” said San Jose Police Sgt. Heather Randol. “There’s really two parts to the investigation, the alleged indecent exposure and the assault that we can see on the video. So there are two crimes we are investigating.”
The park, just across a creek from a school, is usually crowded with kids and families. Neighbors called the incident disturbing.
“I bring my kids here, we have barbecues here. It’s shocking,” said neighbor Hector Medina.
“You couldn’t really understand what the man who was being assaulted was saying for himself,” said Medina. “And the man doing the assaulting, he should have handled it in a different way.”
No one from the parents group or the people with them stuck around to speak with police after the incident, although officers did make contact with the beating victim.
Investigators were looking for the others involved and urging anyone with information to call San Jose Police.