Two suspects were arrested in Santa Monica for allegedly holding a mentally handicapped man against his will and torturing him over the course of six months.
The victim, a 26-year-old Hispanic male, was dropped off on March 20 at a Culver City hospital, where he was admitted and treated for assault injuries described as “severe” by a Santa Monica Police Department release. Those injuries included numerous cuts, abrasions, and contusions over his entire body, including his genitalia. He also suffered from emaciation, having lost 60 to 80 pounds of weight. Further investigation revealed that the victim had numerous new tattoos, presumably forced upon him by his tormentors.
The victim was transported from Culver City to a local hospital for advanced medical care, where treating physicians advised officers of the delicate condition of the handicapped victim on March 23, at 12:48 p.m. The victim informed the police that he had been held against his will at a residence in the 3000 block of Santa Monica Boulevard, where he was assaulted and tortured repeatedly. Detectives from the Santa Monica Police Department conducted a search warrant on the suspects’ residence at that location and arrested Francisco Gerardo Rodriguez, a 25-year-old Hispanic male, and booked him for assault with a deadly weapon, mayhem, torture, and abuse of a dependent adult. Officers also arrested Maria Leyva Jasmilet, a 26-year-old Hispanic female, who was booked for abuse of a dependent adult.
During the arrest, the suspects’ two children, ages five and seven, were taken into protective custody and placed with the Department of Children and Family Services.
Anyone with information related to this crime is asked to contact Sgt. Ira Rutan at 310.458.8959 or Investigator Hee Seok Ahn at 310.458.8452 or the Santa Monica Police Department (24 hours) at 310.458.8495.
If you wish to remain anonymous, you can call WeTip at 1.800.78.CRIME (1.800.782.7463), or submit the tip online at wetip.com. You will remain completely anonymous and may be eligible for a reward, up to $1,000, if your information leads to an arrest and conviction.
Callers can also contact Crime Stoppers by either calling 800.222.TIPS, texting from your mobile, or by visiting their website at lacrimestoppers.org. Callers may remain anonymous and may be qualified to receive a $1,000 reward by Crime Stoppers.