[symple_googlemap title=”Valencia elder abuse” location=” 23700 block of Via Gavola, Valencia, CA” height=”300″ zoom=”16″]

An 18-year-old man was charged with a pair of misdemeanors Tuesday for allegedly punching a 71-year-old man who asked him to stop smoking cigarettes around some young children at a Valencia park.

Tanner Ian Smith, of Saugus, pleaded not guilty to one misdemeanor count each of battery on an elder and battery, according to the District Attorney’s Office. He is due back in court in Santa Clarita on May 23.

According to prosecutors and sheriff’s officials, the victim approached a group of people around 2:15 p.m. Monday at Valencia Glen Park in the 23700 block of Via Gavola and asked them to stop smoking because there were young children around.

The group allegedly laughed in response and insulted the man, who took a photo of the group, prompting Smith to punch the man in the face, knocking him to the ground, prosecutors said.

Smith was arrested without incident about 7 p.m. Monday, according to the sheriff’s department.

His bail was set at $20,000, and a judge issued a protective order to keep Smith away from the victim and the park, prosecutors said.

He faces up to one year in jail and $1,000 in fines if convicted.

—City News Service

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