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77-Year-Old Retired Cop Beaten For Wearing MAGA Hat, Thin Blue Line Mask

Red Bluff, CA – A 77-year-old former law enforcement officer and military veteran was the victim of a broad-daylight attack last week, after he wore a Thin Blue Line mask and a red Make America Great Again (MAGA) hat to the post office.

The victim, who did not want to be identified, said he was at the Red Bluff post office on Walnut Street on Sept. 18 when a man and a woman walked up to him, KRCR reported.

“She looked at me and she goes, ‘We just don’t like people like you,’” the former officer recounted. “[I was] just kind of got shocked a little bit and said, ‘Well, that breaks my heart.’”

He said he barely had the words out of his mouth when he was hit on the left side of his head.

“Then somehow he got me in a headlock and started pounding me on top of my head,” the elderly man told KRCR. “I got blood all over the place and I’m trying to figure, you know, where’s my hat? Where’s my package?”

The victim was rushed to St. Elizabeth Hospital by ambulance with scrapes and cuts to the top of his head.

He was treated and released, but was still suffering from headaches three days after the unprovoked attack, KRCR reported.

The former officer said he blames himself for not being more aware of his surroundings.

“I just feel kind of bad, seven years in the military, Vietnam veteran and 30-plus years in law enforcement and you’re always taught situational awareness,” he told KRCR. “And this guy came out of…I never saw it coming.”

He said he was shocked to have become the target of so much hate.

“I don’t hate them. I never met them,” he said. “I just can’t believe they would do something like that.”

Police later apprehended the alleged attacker, who has been identified as 26-year-old Daniel Gomez-Martinez.

He has been charged with elder abuse and battery.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

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Written by Holly Matkin


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