At least nine California teens have been arrested in a mob attack on three off-duty Marines that may have involved more than forty assailants. The shocking Memorial Day weekend incident was caught on video.
Five members of the violent mob have been charged with felonies, and another four are expected to receive misdemeanor charges. That’s still nowhere close to the total number of people involved in the attack on active service members.
The frightening incident began Friday evening at the San Clemente Pier Bowl area when an unruly mob was throwing fireworks into the crowd. One of the victims, Hunter Antonino, said the youths “were lighting off fireworks, they were being belligerent and obnoxious and annoying.”
One of the Marines was struck in the face with debris from the firecrackers. Antonino said he approached them “and told them to stop.”
Instead, they followed the off-duty Marine back to the pier. Video showed one of the teens punch one of the victims in the back of the head. When the man who was attacked turned to confront his assailant, the young man ran but was replaced by several of his violent associates.
Mob of 40 teens beat 3 Marines at California beachhttps://t.co/FWXZZ6Z4iP
— Jack Poso 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) May 30, 2023
The Marines were then attacked from all sides.
Antonino said afterwards, “I didn’t know what was going on. I was just trying to go back to the car and then I had turned around…to help them out.”
He said at that point they were surrounded and then being stomped on.
Four males and one female are charged with assault with a deadly weapon and were incarcerated at the juvenile jail, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. Identities of the suspects are being withheld due to their ages.
San Clemente Mayor Chris Duncan confirmed that law enforcement is using the shocking video footage to track down the perpetrators. “They think they have the people they are looking for,” he told reporters. “Not to say that there might not be a few others out there.”
Duncan expressed confidence that authorities have the main attackers behind bars.
He said that in 2023, people who commit such violent acts will be caught because someone is recording it. “I hope this serves as a learning lesson for young folks in the community not to let themselves get out of control when something like this happens.”