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Assault and robbery of South Los Angeles street vendor caught on video

A southern Los Angeles street vendor who was brutally attacked and robbed by a group of masked men, a mugging that happened in front of his daughter, is now struggling to make ends meet after having his entire income stolen from him.

It was around 3pm on Saturday when Jose Carbajal was parked on the street near Broadway and Manchester Avenue selling T-shirts and other merchandise when suddenly a group of five masked thieves accosted him.

Carbajal said he felt something might have been pressed against him before he was thrown to the ground.

A witness driving nearby captured the merciless attack on the street vendor with her cellphone camera.

The robbers not only set out with some of Carbajal’s merchandise, but also stole $2,200, his license plate number, passport and debit card, which they later used to buy gas.

Street vendor attacked in South LA
Cellphone video shows five masked thieves attacking and robbing Jose Carbajal, a south LA street vendor who sells T-shirts and other merchandise, on September 2, 2023. (@Enamoradoalex)

Carbajal, a single father, said one of the worst aspects of the whole experience was that it happened in front of his 8-year-old daughter, who has autism.

“My message to her is may God continue to bless her,” he told KTLA in Spanish. “One day things won’t be going so well. All of these people out here are working very hard to support the lives of our families, as I am doing for my daughter. What they did was not very kind.”

At the moment, Carbajal and his daughter are living in a hotel. He said he was saving for an apartment, but since he was robbed he has to start from scratch.

“I see it that way because I can’t let it affect my personal life,” he said in Spanish. “I have to keep going. I have a daughter who depends on me and failure is not an option.”

He was back at work just a day after the robbery and assault. He said he is grateful to the other street vendors in the area who are supporting him and hopes his story will serve as a warning to others to stay aware of their surroundings.

“My message goes to other street vendors. May you continue to be safe, smart and productive around you,” he said in Spanish. “It’s a dangerous job, but we have to keep doing it.”

Los Angeles Police Department authorities said they were aware of the assault and robbery and were investigating the incident.

Meanwhile, people have reached out to Carbajal and donated via a GoFundMe campaign set up to help him recoup some of the casualties from the brutal attack.

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