Police identify man accused of antisemitic attack outside Westside restaurant

·2 min read
Video frame grab from attack on diners that occurred outside a Beverly Grove restaurant
An image, taken from video, shows the incident late Tuesday outside a Beverly Grove restaurant. (KTLA)

Authorities have identified a man arrested in connection with a suspected antisemitic attack outside a Westside sushi restaurant this week.

Xavier Pabon, 30, of Banning was taken into custody Friday night and booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, the Los Angeles Police Department said in a news release. Detectives will also recommend additional hate-crime charges, they said.

Pabon was released Sunday after posting $275,000 bond and was next due in court Sept. 23, jail records state.

Police described the man as one of the primary suspects in the attack, which took place about 10 p.m. Tuesday and involved people shouting anti-Israel slogans outside a restaurant in the West Hollywood area. Investigators are continuing to look for the other suspects, they said.

The assault came after a deadly battle in the Gaza Strip and Israel, escalating tensions in the U.S. among supporters of Israel and those who back the Palestinians. A fragile cease-fire between Israel and Hamas went into effect Friday.

A video capturing part of the Tuesday night attack shows people in a caravan of cars flying Palestinian flags and yelling, “F— you” and “You guys should be ashamed of yourselves,” as they drive by the restaurant, where there was outdoor dining.

At one point before the attack, which later escalated to kicking and punching, a person can be heard yelling, “Israel kills children!”

A witness told The Times that people from the car caravan began throwing bottles and other items.

“They were chanting, ‘Death to Jews’ and ‘Free Palestine,’” said the witness, who asked to remain anonymous because he feared for his safety. “They had malice.”

In the video, about eight people, most dressed in black, converge on restaurant patrons. The fight, which took place on the sidewalk, grows increasingly violent. One man swings a metal stanchion before being pushed against a car, punched and kicked, the video shows.

Several men were assaulted, the LAPD said.

The incident prompted condemnation from Los Angeles public officials and faith leaders.

It also inspired shows of support: In the wake of the attack, groups of security volunteers were on guard in the Fairfax District and other neighborhoods across the Southland, keeping watch and offering to walk people to and from synagogue. Police also stepped up patrols in heavily Jewish neighborhoods.

Times staff writers Hayley Smith, Richard Winton and Lila Seidman contributed to this report.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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