Crime & Justice

Homeless man will face murder charge for beating of elderly man downtown

The approximate location of the April 2 beating of Dong Yul Lee, which led to Lee's death on April 2, Los Angeles police said. Moses LaFawn Parker, 46, is facing a murder charge for the attack, which witnesses said was unprovoked.
The approximate location of the April 2 beating of Dong Yul Lee, which led to Lee's death on April 2, Los Angeles police said. Moses LaFawn Parker, 46, is facing a murder charge for the attack, which witnesses said was unprovoked.
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A homeless man is facing a murder charge in connection with the April 2 beating in downtown Los Angeles of an elderly man who died Monday, the Los Angeles Police Department said.

LaFawn Moses Parker, 46, who was booked into Los Angeles County Jail on a charge of attempted murder with an enhancement for elder abuse, has now been booked on a murder charge, the LAPD said.

The victim of the beating, who was identified after the attack as 85-year-old Dong Yul Lee, died at about 6 a.m. Monday, the LAPD said.

Parker, a transient who the LAPD said appeared to be mentally unstable when taken into custody, is being held on bail of $1.055 million, according to county jail records. He entered a plea of not guilty Tuesday at his arraignment on the attempted murder charge, but the status of his arraignment on the newly filed murder charge was not yet known, said Greg Risling, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office.

The charges stem from an incident that occurred at about 3:40 p.m. on April 2, when Parker allegedly approached Lee near 7th and Olive streets and, although unprovoked, punched and kicked Lee and then stomped on Lee's head as he lay on the sidewalk, police said.

Parker was stopped by a security guard from a nearby Whole Foods Market who told KPCC media partner NBC 4 that he chased Parker to a parking lot, subdued him with pepper spray, and then handcuffed him until police arrived.

This story was updated with Parker's not-guilty plea.