Man Who Threatened Asian-American Olympic Athlete, Returns to Park in Wealthy Orange County Two Weeks Later and Knocks out Elderly Asian Couple.
Hate directed at Asian-Americans has reached epic proportions in posh Orange County, California where the District Attorney reports an astounding 1800% increase in anti-Asian incidents in just the past year alone according to KTLA. The reason? The DA says it’s due to backlash over the COVID-19 pandemic which was dubbed “the China virus” by former President Donald Trump. Many believe Trump’s comments have contributed to a sharp increase in hate directed towards Asian Americans. Orange County DA Todd Spitzer made a strong statement, saying:
“I will not tolerate and will punish all criminal haters,” he said in the release. “Orange County law enforcement and prosecutors are properly trained and will investigate and prosecute haters to the fullest extent of the law.”
However, in an odd lack of enforcement, 26-year-old Michael Orlando Vivona was arrested on April 1st for threatening and harassing Japanese-American Olympian Sakura Kokumai as she prepared for the 2021 Olympic Games in Grijalva park only to be released and reoffend in an allegedly more violent manner just weeks later.
During the first incident, Vivona was spotted “aggressively yelling at the woman, threatening her, and spitting in her direction,” according to a news release. He told the 4th Degree Black Belt female who ranks 5th in the world in Karate “I’ll f*** you up” while she practiced her moves. The out of shape aggressor can be seen approaching th gold medalist in this shocking video.
Yet despite it all being caught on camera, just 17 days later, for some unknown reason he was back in the same park where he allegedly viciously attacked an elderly couple.
“Police say around 7:40 p.m. a 78- and 79-year-old Korean couple were taking their nightly walk …when Vivona is accused of running up to them and punching the husband in the face, causing him to fall. As the couple attempted to find help, Vivona is accused of punching the wife in the head, causing her to fall.
Bystanders intervened and Vivona was arrested by the Orange Police Department. Vivona later made statements to police disparaging Asians.”
One must question why our legal system let this man back in that park two weeks later and also question how authentic the DA’s promises are in light of this incident. Talk about red flags being ignored.
Vivona was charged with two felony counts of elder abuse, two felony counts of battery – hate crime causing injury, and two felony hate crime enhancements.
On Friday, 6 months after the incident, prosecutors finally announced an additional hate crime charge connected to the earlier incident involving Kokumai.
Vivona now faces a maximum sentence of nine years in state prison and one year in the Orange County Jail if convicted on all counts. Vivona is currently being held at the Theo Lacy Facility in Orange on $65,000 bail.