SAN PEDRO (CBSLA.com) — Family and friends have set up two FoFundMe accouns for a high school baseball player who was severely-beaten Thursday evening by two unknown assailants.
Evan Jimenez, a 15-year-old freshman who plays ball for the San Pedro junior varsity team, was ebullient, coming off a 20-0 win against Gardena High.
Jimenez, was jumped and beaten by two men when he was walking home from a friend’s house. The two men reportedly asked Jimenez about his gang affiliation and when he told them he wasn’t in a gang, they allegedly started to assault him.
The attack took place near the corner of Bandini and West Second Street in San Pedro.
The victim was apparently hit over the head and in the face with a Jack Daniels bottle, stepped on, kicked and brutally attacked. The entire left side of his face is fractured. Jimenez was left unconscious to die in an alley, his family said.
He hasn’t been able to speak. Police put the story together talking to a few witnesses.
A Good Samaritan found Jimenez and drove him to the hospital.
KCAL9’s Jeff Nguyen spoke to Jimenez’ devastated family Saturday.
“Even is the sweetest boy. We’re having a difficult time understanding why someone would do this,” said his aunt, Cortney Steinhoff.
She choked back tears describing her nephew’s condition.
His mother has not left his bedside.
The beating was so severe his own family was taken aback when they saw him for the first time.
“It was just unbelievable,” says cousin Briana Arredondo, “he was just very unrecognizable.”
She also has trouble understanding why anyone would attack Evan.
“He was out-going. Loved by so many. Such a gentleman,” said his aunt.
While the family doesn’t know all that happened to Evan, they know it’s clear none of it was good.
“His face is telling a story,” said Steinhoff, “he’s telling the story. Silently.”
Jiminez is expected to recover but is at Harbor UCLA Medical Center in the ICU. He is unable to speak, on a breathing tube. It’s unclear how much longer he will need to remain hospitalized.
The friends and family mindful of the mounting hospital bills have set up fundraising efforts.