A Santa Ana man was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of hurling a cell phone at a Lyft driver, knocking out her tooth, in a dispute over parking spaces set aside for the disabled at a gas station.
The encounter occurred about 11 a.m. Friday. The driver for the ride- hailing service stopped at an Arco station at 3414 S. Main St. with a passenger, who wanted to buy something from the on-site convenience store, Santa Ana police Cpl. Anthony Bertagna said.
According to Bertagna, the 43-year-old driver, whose name was withheld, “pulled into a handicapped stall and took up two spaces” and was confronted by the 46-year-old suspect, identified as Malcolm Ernest May.
As the driver attempted to park the vehicle again and fit it into one spot, her passenger came out of the store and got into an argument with the suspect, Bertagna said.
The Lyft driver began videotaping the argument on a cell phone, prompting the suspect to attack the Lyft driver, Bertagna alleged.
“He goes after the driver when he sees her videotaping him — he knocks her to the ground, takes her phone and throws the phone at her face and knocks out one of her teeth and drives away,” Bertagna alleged.
Investigators used surveillance video, the cell phone video and witness accounts to identify May, who was arrested after declining to be questioned by detectives at the office of his attorney, Bertagna said.
May was arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and robbery, Bertagna said.
Police were looking for the passenger, who they have not identified because the woman did not book her ride through Lyft, Bertagna said.
–City News Service
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