By Ken Stone
The Sheriff’s Department says it is investigating a battery and vandalism case involving the man seen driving last week on East County freeways with a Nazi flag.
The alleged victim was the driver himself, authorities reported Tuesday.
Lt. Ricardo Lopez, sheriff’s media relations director, told Times of San Diego that the driver allegedly was attacked June 28.
“We are not going to release the name of the RP (victim) at this time,” he said, using the acronym for reporting party.
“Just before 2 p.m., a man contacted the Sheriff’s Department to report his Nazi flag had been vandalized in a store parking lot located in the 1600 block of Alpine Boulevard,” Lopez said.
The man says he saw another man tampering with his flag, draped over the rear lift gate of his SUV, Lopez said.
“Both men began to argue when the reporting party stated he was pushed by the other man,” he said. “He also claims he was verbally and physically attacked by a woman who appeared to be with the man who had vandalized the flag.”
The couple involved in the reported confrontation got into a car with two other people and drove away, Lopez said via email.
The reporting party made a complaint of battery and vandalism, which the detectives at the Alpine Sheriff’s Station are investigating, he said.
Two days earlier — June 26 — the Sheriff’s Communications Center received a call just after 5 p.m. about a man waving a Nazi flag while standing on the hood of his SUV along Alpine Boulevard near Willows Road in Alpine, Lopez said.
“When deputies from the Alpine Sheriff’s Station arrived on scene to investigate the matter, the man was gone,” he said.
On social media, the driver has been decried but also defended. Some even posted the name of the Alpine apartment complex where he lives. Times of San Diego has received no response to emailed requests for comment.
One Twitter user had posted: “Another San Diego Nazi. My coworker saw a guy waving a nazi flag on I-8 on Friday (6/26).”
But it wasn’t until the following Monday that the flag was widely seen on Interstate 8 and state Route 67 in East County, leading to a story that was widely shared.
On Thursday, Albert Aguilar of Alpine described the driver as a brownish-skin man with a bald head and a beard.
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