A 64-year-old man is in hospital following an alleged assault on his front lawn early Wednesday evening.
Police said the attack appears to have been random.
According to police, the man was in the front yard of his property along Dieppe Boulevard S., just before 5 p.m., when the attack unfolded. They said he was moving a sprinkler when a woman began yelling and approached him in what they described as an “aggressive” manner.
Police said that when the man told the woman that he planned to call 911, she hit him in the face with an unknown object. Police alleged that she then fled down the street and entered a home further down the block.
When the Lethbridge Police Service and EMS got to the scene, the victim was bleeding and had significant injuries to his face. Police said he was admitted to hospital with a badly broken nose and cheekbone.
Police arrested 32-year-old Ashlee Brook Pederson of Lethbridge without incident on Wednesday evening. She has since been charged with assault causing bodily harm in connection with the incident, and is currently in custody awaiting a judicial interim release hearing.
Police said they are unsure of whether or not drugs or alcohol were a factor in the woman’s alleged behaviour.
Since October of 2018, Lethbridge has seen four separate incidents where senior citizens have been randomly attacked:
- Oct. 24, 2018: a 70-year-old man needed stitches after police said he was hit in the face by the purse of a 38-year-old woman. The man was walking midday in downtown Lethbridge and police believe the woman was high on methamphetamines;
- May 22, 2019: a 75-year-old woman was badly beaten in her home after a 21-year-old Ottawa man allegedly spent 18 hours hiding in her basement;
- June 11, 2019: a 68-year-old man was attacked when police said he pulled into his garage. The woman police believe was behind the attack allegedly tried to choke the man with the strap of her purse;
- July 3, 2019: Wednesday’s incident involving a 65-year-old man who was allegedly assaulted by a woman on his front lawn.
Despite four incidents in a nine-month span, police said on Thursday that they don’t believe there has been a spike in such cases.
“It does happen, and of course when it happens, it catches the attention of everybody, because we’re looking at a more vulnerable sector of our society,” said Staff Sgt. Dwayne Smith of the Lethbridge Police Service.
“We do take it very seriously.”
Smith said police have the same advice for senior citizens as they do for anyone else.