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Lena Hernandez, notoriously known as “Torrance Karen,” is back on the streets after posting a $1 bail.
The 54-year-old resident of Torrance, California was arrested around 1 p.m. on July 3 through a warrant for a battery charge, which stems from a 2019 incident involving a Filipino American woman.
Hernandez, whose racist tirades against Asian Americans had gone viral, is accused of grabbing, pushing and punching Kayceelyn Salminao at Del Amo Fashion Center last October.
The retired social worker was allegedly verbally assaulting a mall custodian when Salminao tried to intervene and ended up getting physically attacked herself.
Salminao came forward to share her story after Hernandez appeared in videos that show her ranting against two Asian Americans on separate occasions on June 10.
In one of the incidents, Hernandez told Sherry Bulseco, another Filipino American, to “Go back to whatever f***ing Asian country you belong in!”
— Kayceelyn Salminao (@kayceelyn_a) June 11, 2020
The other incident involved a Japanese American father, whom Hernandez repeatedly called “Chinaman” and threatened with his two minor children, telling them: “You are going to get f***ed and your kids are going to get f***ed.”
The three victims recently banded together through an attorney and called on Torrance Mayor Patrick J. Furey, the Torrance City Attorney’s Office and the Torrance Police Department to investigate and prosecute Hernandez for her actions.
The same racist threatened and assaulted us today.
Reported the incident to @TorrancePD
— Anti Karen League (@AntiKarenLeague) June 11, 2020
On July 2, the City Attorney charged Hernandez with battery over the incident involving Salminao. However, she was not charged for her racist rants as there is simply “insufficient evidence.”
Hernandez’s bail was set at $1, and due to the COVID-19 crisis, some Los Angeles courts have lowered bail for most misdemeanors to $0. She was released at about 4 p.m. on Friday.
“We are relieved that Lena Hernandez has been arrested and we feel that this is one small step towards justice for all the victims. However, we are disheartened and unsatisfied that she was only charged with a single count of misdemeanor battery on Kayceelyn Salminao,” the victims said in a joint statement following her arrest.
They added: “We have suffered extreme emotional and mental trauma as a result of Lena Hernandez’s verbal attacks, yet the City Attorney did not find our statements and the viral videos to be sufficient evidence to support a criminal filing of criminal threats, assault, or child endangerment. The declination is even more disappointing because it sends the wrong message to individuals who choose to threaten and verbally attack people and their children based on their race and ethnicity.”
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Joint statement from #lenahernandez victims following her arrest Friday on one misdemeanor charge of battery involving 1 victim. Other 2 cases were dismissed by @cityoftorranceca City Attorney. #justiceneeded #stopracism #stophatred #asiansmericanvoices #speakup #speakout @kayceelynsalminao @roxaslaw