60-Year-Old Man Brutally Beaten in Petaluma; Suspects at Large in Possible Hate Crime

Police in Petaluma are searching for at least four suspects in a brutal beating that left a 60-year-old man's face disfigured and sent him to the hospital Saturday night, according to the Petaluma Police Department.

The assault is being investigated as a possible hate crime, police said.

Just after 9 p.m. Saturday, a woman called police and reported her domestic partner had just been attacked by four or five African-American men near the intersection of Mary Street and Petaluma Boulevard North, police said. Officers responded immediately to the scene and found the victim, who is white, on the ground suffering from numerous facial injuries. He was taken to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital.

The couple told police they were walking west on Mary toward their car after dinner at a nearby restaurant. Along the way, they passed several black men in their 20s standing around an emerald-green Honda Civic, police said. One of the men then hurled profanity at the victim and referred to the victim’s race.

The victim turned around and saw one of the men rushing at him, swinging his arms, so he grabbed the man, brought him to the ground and pinned him, police said. The other men by the Honda then repeatedly kicked the victim in the face before getting into the car and fleeing the scene.

The man suffered a left orbital fracture, a nasal fracture and other abrasions and facial swelling, police said. He spent two days in the hospital. The woman was unharmed.

Police haven't been able to find witnesses or video footage from nearby businesses that might help identify the suspects. The Honda had no front license plate and a possibe partial rear plate of "611," police said.

Anyone with information about the incident should contact Officer Ron Flores at 707-778-4372.

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