Two suspects pleaded not guilty on Monday to multiple felony assault charges for their alleged involvement in two incidents in West Hollywood on Aug. 7, including a hit and run collision that left a female victim hospitalized in critical condition.
The incidents began at approximately 2 a.m. near Robertson and Santa Monica boulevards. One of the suspects, identified as Joseph Octavio Osuna, 22, of Bakersfield, was allegedly intoxicated and confronted a group of women. Osuna was joined by his friend, Hector Joseph Hernandez, 29, of Whittier, who also became involved in the verbal altercation.
“[Osuna] was on Robertson and was apparently having difficulty and threw up,” said Lt. Mike White, with the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station. “Some of the women in the group made fun of him, and he ended up arming himself with a belt and using the buckle as a weapon.”
White said two of the victims were struck by the belt and injured. One was treated at the scene and released, while the other was taken to a hospital, treated for minor wounds and later released.
Osuna allegedly fled on foot north on Robertson Boulevard and east on El Tovar Place, where he entered a vehicle driven by Hernandez. As the men drove onto El Tovar Place — a short street leading to the parking structure for the West Hollywood Library — one of the female victims attempted to take a photograph of the vehicle’s license plate. She moved out of the way, but Hernandez, who police said was driving, allegedly intentionally struck two other victims standing in the street on El Tovar Place.
One of the victims, an unidentified man, sustained minor injuries, but an unidentified female victim was run over and critically injured. The lieutenant said deputies received multiple 911 calls, and another witness followed the suspects’ vehicle. Deputies later pulled the suspects over near the intersection of Santa Monica Boulevard and Genesee Avenue.
Both suspects were arrested without incident. Hernandez has been charged with three counts of assault with a deadly weapon, one count of leaving the scene of an accident, and one count of driving under the influence causing injury. Osuna is charged with two counts of assault by means likely to cause bodily injury.
Hernandez remained in custody as of Wednesday and is being held in lieu of $320,000 bail. Osuna is being held in lieu of $60,000 bail.
White said he did not have any further information about where the suspects had been prior to the incident. Both of the men were allegedly intoxicated.
“I would venture to say that alcohol played a role in this,” White added.
Anyone with information is asked to call investigators with the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station at (310)855-8850.
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