City News Service

85-Year-Old War Veteran Dies After Brutal Beating, Robbery; Attacker Still at Large

An 85-year-old war veteran died Wednesday, a week after a brutal attack by a robber still at large left him in a coma.

Sheriff's investigators released a sketch of the man who beat and robbed Frank Hernandez in Carson and left him in a coma before he succumbed to his injuries. 

The Korean War veteran was in his neighborhood, walking alone about 5:30 p.m. on May 31 in the 300 block of East 220th Street "when he was viciously attacked by an unknown suspect," according to Detective Tony Avila of the sheriff's Carson Station.

A South Bay community on edge after back-to-back attacks, including an 85-year-old war veteran who was knocked out and robbed. Hetty Chang reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on Thursday, June 1, 2017.

"I'm just so shocked and sad," said Oliver Montoya, Fernandez's neighbor. Montoya was also attacked that day by the same man.

"We thought that he would actually survive and come out of the coma, because he was still strong," he said.

What was once an assault investigation has now turned into a homicide investigation. 

The attacker was described as Hispanic, in his 20s, with a light complexion and short curly hair. He was wearing a grey hooded sweatshirt, dark shorts and a dark baseball cap.

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Carson
Sheriff's investigators Friday, June 2, 2017, released a sketch of a assault and robbery suspect who left an 85-year-old man in Carson in a coma.

Anyone with information about the assault and robbery or who recognizes the suspect depicted in the sketch was urged to call Avila at (310) 830-1123. Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling (800) 222-TIPS.

If you would like to donate to a GoFundMe account set up to help Hernandez's family, you may do so here. Note that GoFundMe deducts 7.9 percent of all funds raised in the form of platform and payment processing charges.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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