San Francisco police are still looking for the person who attacked an elderly pro-life man last week outside a Planned Parenthood abortion facility.
A video of the assault went viral earlier this week after LifeNews.com shared it. It shows Ron, the 85-year-old leader of 40 Days for Life San Francisco, being knocked to the ground and kicked repeatedly by an unknown man in black.
Ron told NBC Bay Area that the same man came three times that week to harass them or try to steal their things. On March 21, the day of the incident, Ron said he tried to stop the man from stealing their 40 Days for Life banner. That is when the video began.
“I tried to keep him from taking it and that was it,” Ron told the news station. “Then he knocked me down and kicked me.”
Ron, who has bruises from the attack but is back praying outside Planned Parenthood, said their pro-life group has never experienced such violence.
“We were just here praying as we always do during the day,” he said. “The violence is pretty rare. It does happen but this is the worst.”
San Francisco police estimate the incident occurred around 3:45 p.m. March 21 outside the Planned Parenthood abortion facility in Valencia, the San Francisco Gate reports. The suspect in the video appears to be a young, white male; he was wearing all black and riding a bicycle.
“The victim is an 85-year-old male, and the suspect approached him and attempted to steal the victim’s banner,” Officer Robert Rueca told reporters. “The victim was using the banner for a planned protest. The victim attempted to stop the suspect from taking the banner. That’s when the suspect assaulted the victim.”
Police asked anyone with information about the assault to call 415-575-4444 or text TIP411, beginning the text with SFPD.
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Planned Parenthood is believed to have video surveillance of the area where the attack took place, but it allegedly has not been willing to provide the video or any other aid in the investigation.
Life Legal is representing the elderly victim, who is in fear for his safety. Ron’s last name is not being released for that reason.
“The vicious attack against our elderly client is intolerable,” said Allison Aranda, Life Legal Senior Counsel and former Prosecutor of the Year. “We will pursue all legal avenues to see that justice is served and that the freedom to speak freely on the public sidewalk without threat of physical violence is protected no matter the message. As a former prosecutor, I trust that the San Francisco District Attorney’s office will pursue all legal charges against the perpetrator and bring him to justice.”
Shawn Carney, the president of 40 Days for Life, told Fox News that more pro-lifers are being targeted for harassment and intimidation. The 40 Days for Life campaign promotes peaceful, law-abiding prayer vigils and rallies outside abortion facilities across the world.
“Over the past few months, we have seen an increase in violence from abortion supporters in an effort to instill fear and deter our law-abiding volunteers,” Carney said. “… the idea that San Francisco is tolerant is a joke.”
The video of the latest attack went viral earlier this week, even reaching the eyes of Donald Trump Jr., who shared it on Twitter.