Man already charged in attack on SDG&E worker in Point Loma faces charges in another attack in OB
A man already accused of attacking and hurling racial slurs at a utility worker in Point Loma last year is expected to face additional charges stemming from a separate attack on a man in Ocean Beach, the San Diego city attorney’s office said April 26.
Roger Stefan Witthoeft Jr., 33, is scheduled to be arraigned in San Diego County Superior Court on Friday, May 6, on misdemeanor charges of battery and vandalism linked to an attack on a man in January, prosecutors said in a news release.
Witthoeft is the brother of Ashli Babbitt, the Ocean Beach woman who was shot and killed by a police officer Jan. 6, 2021, inside the U.S. Capitol.
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According to the city attorney’s office, the Ocean Beach incident occurred Jan. 13 on Muir Avenue. Witthoeft was walking down the sidewalk when he apparently became angry that a vehicle was obstructing his path as a man was helping a disabled friend out of the car, prosecutors said. When the man tried to push past, prosecutors allege, Witthoeft struck him and knocked him to the ground, then stomped on his phone and broke it.
Audio of the incident was captured on a neighbor’s security system, according to the city attorney’s office.
The man contacted city prosecutors after reading news coverage of Witthoeft’s arraignment in a case in which he is accused of shoving and trying to punch a San Diego Gas & Electric traffic controller in September. Witthoeft was charged with battery with a hate-crime enhancement and violating the worker’s constitutional rights by threat of force.
According to the city attorney’s office, Witthoeft shouted racial slurs at the worker, who is Latino, including variations of “Why don’t you talk in English, you [expletive] immigrant?” and “Go back to your country, you [expletive] immigrant.”
Witthoeft pleaded not guilty in March, and his trial is scheduled for June. He currently is not in custody, officials said.
Anyone with information about either incident or other cases is asked to contact the city attorney’s office at (619) 533-5661