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SF man who kicked sleeping person ‘mad’ about homeless crisis, prosecutors say

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A man arrested in connection with a violent attack on a homeless person pleaded not guilty in San Francisco Superior Court on Wednesday. (Courtesy image)

The computer technician accused of kicking a sleeping homeless person in the face for no apparent reason told police upon arrest that he was maddened by the failure of public officials to solve homelessness in San Francisco.

Samuel Gabel Youmtoub, 58, is facing various charges for allegedly carrying out a series of attacks in San Francisco including an incident captured on surveillance footage May 24, when Youmtoub allegedly walked passed a sleeping man in the Tenderloin, turned around and kicked the man twice before walking away.

In court records filed Wednesday, Assistant District Attorney Diane Knoles said that Youmtoub asked officers who arrested him near United Nations Plaza on Sunday, “Why aren’t you doing anything about the homeless?”

SEE RELATED: SF man accused of kicking homeless person in face for no reason

Youmtoub “feels that the homeless situation is sad, but doesn’t personally blame the homeless,” Knoles said. “He stated that the failure of public officials to resolve the homeless problem makes him mad. He believes The City’s most urgent problem concerns the homeless and wants to help come up with solutions.”

At his arraignment Wednesday, Youmtoub pleaded not guilty to seven charges including multiple counts of assault and battery. Youmtoub was prone to verbal outbursts in the courtroom to the chagrin of his defense attorney, greeting Superior Court Judge Stephen Murphy with an off-kilter joke.

“I’d say ‘hi’ judge but it might seem a little biased,” Youmtoub quipped in orange jail garb, his graying hair pulled back with glasses resting on his face.

“Don’t,” Deputy Public Defender Ilona Solomon told him.

Solomon argued that there was not clear and convincing evidence that Youmtoub would be a threat to the public if released from County Jail. She said Youmtoub is a self-employed computer tech who has lived in the Bay Area for four decades. As she spoke, Youmtoub attempted to speak again with the judge.

“Please don’t say anything,” Solomon had to tell Youmtoub another time.

Youmtoub has been charged with three incidents. On May 29, he allegedly attacked a Muni passenger at random on a 14R bus driving down Mission Street.

The Muni rider was wearing earbuds when Youmtoub allegedly began to scream at him, grabbed him by the hair and repeatedly smashed his face into a metal pole, according to prosecutors. The attack was captured on Muni bus video. Prosecutors said Youmtoub kicked the man before walking away.

Five days earlier, police found a homeless man “lying in a large pool of blood” after Youmtoub allegedly kicked him in the face on Leavenworth Street. Surveillance cameras recorded the beating and showed Youmtoub wearing a business suit and a beanie.

Back in February, Youmtoub allegedly punched a man repeatedly and then kicked him once he fell to the ground near Yerba Buena Gardens on Third Street. Youmtoub was arrested at the time, according to prosecutors, but told authorities that he was defending himself because the victim was making “weird faces.”

“These are violent attacks in which in every single incident the defendant not only punches the victims but kicks them in the face,” Assistant District Attorney Kara Lacy told the judge during the arraignment.

The victims were injured in each incident, according to prosecutors. The Muni rider suffered a broken nose and required surgery. The homeless man was taken to St. Luke’s Hospital for treatment. The man who was “making faces” needed six stitches above each of his eyes.

In court records, Knoles said Youmtoub has a “lengthy and violent history” beginning in the 1970’s and including convictions for misdemeanor assault, trespassing and disturbing the peace. He also served three years in state prison for a felony assault and burglary.

Youmtoub is scheduled to appear in court Monday for a detention hearing.

mbarba@sfexaminer.com

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