See Update No. 2 at the end of this post with booking photos of the suspects and more details about the attack.
See Update No. 1 where a man who claims to be an arrestee says police got the wrong men.
ORIGINAL POST, AUG. 22, 7:10 A.M.: An 84-year-old woman didn't want to eat with Ciprian and Paul G. Patrulescu just before 4 a.m. Saturday, but her refusal led the men in their early 30s to allegedly punch the 5-foot-1, 90-pound woman repeatedly on Harbor Boulevard in Costa Mesa.
It also led to their arrests on suspicion of battery causing serious injury and elder abuse.
The victim would not cooperate with Costa Mesa Police nor go to the hospital for treatment, so the following narrative was based on witness statements:
The men drank at Patrick's Pub, 2645
Harbor Blvd., then grabbed some beers at the nearby 7-Eleven on the way home.
But someone got the bright idea to get burgers as well, and it was on the way to the restaurant that they met the old woman, who was asked to join them. She had no interest in burgers, accompanying them or even talking to them at that hour.
After she raised her voice at the pair, police say, they attacked her. Horrified onlookers called police, which led to the Patrulescus being taken into custody.
UPDATE NO. 1, AUG. 22, 4:37 P.M.: A commenter to this post claiming to be Ciprian Patrulescu writes that police got the wrong men:
“Costa Mesa PD will be singing a different tune a couple of months from now. The victim did not identify us as the criminals but the police still held us. I guess it's a crime to walk to iHOP on your birthday.”
UPDATE NO. 2, AUG. 22, 6:18 P.M.: A statement from the Costa Mesa Police Department this evening alleges the following about the incident that landed Ciprian and Paul G. Patrulescu in jail:
- A woman driving near Harbor and Baker Street saw two men approaching a small elderly who had been lying on a bus bench surrounded by her belongings.
- Concerned about what was going on, the driver turned around and approached the scene.
- She told police at least one of the two men punched the elderly woman, who stands 5-foot-1 and weighs 90 pounds, in the face.
- The driver yelled out at the men, and they fled on foot as the woman in the car dialed 9-1-1.
- The elderly woman “sustained abrasions and bruising to the left side of her face and left eye area.”
- “Costa Mesa Fire Department personnel had responded as well, providing initial treatment to the victim's injuries. Despite recommendations by both the police officers and fire department personnel, the victim declined any further treatment or transportation to the hospital.”
- Additional arriving officers apprehended two men. They were later identified as Paul and Ciprian Patrulescu. Each was booked on charges of battery with serious injury, conspiracy to commit crime and elder Abuse and held at Orange County Jail in lieu of $50,000 bail.
Paul Patrulescu, 30, of Costa Mesa, is 6-foot-1 and 275 lbs.
Ciprian Patrulescu, 31, of Costa Mesa, is 5-foot-11 and 190 lbs.
Matt Coker has been engaging, enraging and entertaining readers of newspapers, magazines and websites for decades. He spent the first 13 years of his career in journalism at daily newspapers before “graduating” to OC Weekly in 1995 as the paper’s first calendar editor. He went on to be managing editor, executive editor and is now senior staff writer.