LA Sheriff Changes Story: Machete Guy Had Indeed Been Charged By DA, Just Not As Severely As Asked

Written by on September 3, 2021

The L A sheriff’s office has changed its story about that homeless man who attacked a family with a machete last weekend.

It turns out the machete attacker … Richard Franck … was not released without charges … by the District Attorney …. following an earlier arrest in April.

That was the charge made Wednesday by Sheriff Alex Villanueva.

But Lt. Chad Waters last night told a community meeting in Malibu that charges were indeed filed by the D A … and that apparently Richard Franck was released for time served last April.


Suspect Franck approached Deputy Tellez … who works here in the area … and brandished a knife at him.

The suspect was apprehended and arrested.

There were charges filed thru the District Attorneys office for felony brandishing a knife … and threats to that deputy.

Unfortunately they were only filed for the misdemeanor charge … and the suspect was released.”

The suspect was released … spent some time in jail … and then possibly a plea deal was cut.

Possibly after time served.

Details on that misdemeanor case have not been released by the DA’s office .. although KBUU has asked.

Reducing a proposed charge from a felony to a misdemeanor … and then a sentence of time served … is a fact of everyday life in the judicial system.

And not unusual .., either before the new District Attorney was elected or afterward.

If felony charges has been filed against Richard Franck … his term might have been a month or two in the jail … meaning he would have been back on the streets or beaches now anyway.

Yesterday … we played you audio of the sheriff telling the public “the charges were not filed through the district attorney’s office.”

But also yesterday … the detective says charges were filed … misdemeanors instead of the felonies that were requested.

There is a big difference.

Nevertheless … sheriff Alex Villanueva is using this instance of deplorable violence by a crazy man to again attack the District Attorney.


This is a preventable case.

Had that been filed as a felony and sustained as a felony … that person may have been in custody and would have avoided the trauma that was inflicted on the victim.”

There is great doubt as to whether the earlier threat would have placed the attacker in jail or prison for any length of time.

The sheriff’s office says the victim lost a thumb … had a deep cleave in his shoulder … and now has lost an eye.

Malibu residents have said on social media that they were aware of the mentally ill man … chasing people off of what he considered to be his beach.

Malibu lawyer Barry Haldeman lives at that beach.

He blames the MRCA … the Mountain Recreation and Conservation Authority … for creating an unsafe situation.

In a letter to the city … Haldeman says Latigo Shores residents have requested some sort of supervision on that beach for years. 

He says the removal of a beach gate by the MRCA several years ago violated the original agreement with the state … which called for nighttime closure of the gate.

And Haldeman blasts the MRCA for failing to manage its beaches … leaving residents and beach visitors alike open to attacks from crazy people.

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