By Edwin Folven, 7/19/2012
Police are searching for a suspect who stabbed a homeless woman near La Brea and DeLongpre avenues early Thursday morning, and is believed to have previously stabbed two other homeless individuals in Santa Monica.
The incident in Hollywood occurred around 1 a.m. as the victim was sleeping, according to Lt. Marc Reina, with the LAPD’s Hollywood Division.
“She felt something and realized she had been stabbed after being told by some other people who came to her aid,” Reina said. “She was wrapped in a sleeping bag. [The injury] wasn’t serious, she was treated and released. There was some evidence collected at the scene, and Robbery-Homicide Division has taken over the investigation.”
Reina said extra patrols are being ordered in the neighborhood where the stabbing occurred, and in other areas where homeless people are known to spend the night.
LAPD investigators are working with detectives from Santa Monica, who are investigating two incidents in which homeless individuals were stabbed in the back while they were sleeping, and their attacker left a typed and signed note stating it was a “death warrant.” The first incident reportedly occurred on July 4, and the second was reported Tuesday. The first victim remains hospitalized, and the second victim sustained only minor injuries.
LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith said a similar note was recovered at the scene of the stabbing in Hollywood. Police are searching for a person of interest, David Ben Keyes, in connection with the stabbings. Keyes, who police described as being homeless, is reportedly from the Santa Barbara area, but is now believed to be in Los Angeles or Santa Monica. He is described as being African American, with a slender build.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the LAPD’s Robbery-Homicide Division at (213)486-6890.