An 18-month-old baby and his mother are recovering after a man attacked them and three other people in their car while they were changing a flat tire on the side of the 215 Freeway in Menifee, stabbing the child and lighting their belongings on fire.
Nicolas Lopez Garcia crossed both directions of freeway traffic just south of Newport Road around 1 a.m. Monday morning and broke the driver’s side window with the jagged edge of a plastic freeway marker, according to California Highway Patrol. He then allegedly broke out the rear window and began stabbing the child.
Four adults who were in the Mazda hatchback, including the child's mother, got out of the car and tried to stop him.
Top news of the day
Three adults were injured before the group from San Diego could get back in the car and drive away and call 911.
When CHP officers arrived, Garcia was setting fire to the group’s belongings. He didn’t respond to their commands to stop, and was arrested after they used a stun gun to stop him.
The little boy and his mother were transported to Inland Valley Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries.
Garcia did not know the family, and officials have called it a random attack. Investigators said he was under the influence of some type of drug.
He is now facing several felony charges, including attempted murder.
Garcia was arrested and is being held in lieu of $1 million bail, according to a CHP statement.