A 21-year-old man was charged Tuesday with a felony assault count stemming from an attack that left a 15-year-old San Pedro High School baseball player in an intensive care unit.
Jaymel Williams pleaded not guilty to one felony count of assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury, along with an allegation that he personally inflicted great bodily injury during the commission of the crime. His next court date is Sept. 13 at the Long Beach courthouse.
Bail was set at $60,000 for the defendant, who was initially arrested on suspicion of attempted murder in connection with the March 30 attack and had been held in lieu of $1 million bail. He could face up to nine years in state prison if convicted as charged, according to according to Sarah Ardalani of the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.
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Williams was arrested last Thursday in connection with the attack on Evan Jimenez, who was walking home from a friend's house when he was confronted by two male assailants shortly after 10 p.m. in an alley in the 900 block of First Street, near Bandini Street, a neighborhood known as La Ramba.
The junior varsity baseball player was beaten unconscious with bottles and choked, according to sheriff's Capt. Dan Beringer. Minutes after the attack, a vehicle pulled into the alley and the teen was loaded into the car and taken to Little Company of Mary Medical Center in San Pedro.
The driver did not leave his name. Jimenez was later transferred to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, where he was treated in the ICU, Beringer said. It was not clear if a second suspect was still being sought. San Pedro head baseball coach Steve Tedesco told the Daily Breeze after the attack that Jimenez is "a great kid with an infectious personality."