Man, 73, beaten to death by hospital roommate in ‘random attack’


LONG BEACH, Calif. (KCBS/KCAL/CNN) – Loving and charismatic is how family describes 74-year-old Francisco Sanchez, the father of eight children and 24 grandchildren.

In one of his last photos taken with his son Ramon, Sanchez was in a coma after police say he was beaten by another patient at a Long Beach hospital.

Sanchez’s son says his father was admitted into College Medical Center on Jan. 31 for a bladder infection.

On that same day, police say another patient sharing a room with Sanchez attacked him.

The beating was so bad Sanchez’s son described a nurse finding his father on the floor, bleeding to death.

Investigators say Sanchez had to be taken to another hospital where he died.

Brandise Tessema has taken her mother to College Medical and she cannot imagine the family’s pain.

“She actually likes this hospital. I frown upon it in a way, just, it is sad to see something like that happen to somebody else. and no one came to help,” Tessema said.

Police could not say how hospital staff were alerted by the altercation and what sparked it.

But officers did arrest 37-year-old Reginald Panthier.

Sanchez’s family says they just want to know why a simple hospital trip ended in such a tragedy.

The College Medical Center is cooperating with Long Beach police.

Hospital spokespeople are calling it a random attack, and are sending their deepest sympathies to the Sanchez family.

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