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During an unprovoked attack on Saturday, former Olympic medalist, Kim Glass, was assaulted with a metal pipe by a 37-year-old homeless man, Semeon Tesfamariam, in Los Angeles.
Glass was finishing lunch with her friend in downtown L.A. when she noticed odd behavior from Tesfamariam. First, she saw him with something in his hand. Then, as he kept looking at her, Glass went to alert her friend, and as soon as she turned her head, he struck her in the face.
Tesfamarian launched the metal pipe at Glass from several feet, hitting her right eye socket and the bridge of her nose. She sustained several facial fractures, such as a severely swollen black eye and heavy bruising. She needed stitching to close the wounds.
Witnesses detained the homeless man until police arrived at the scene. Tesfamariam was arrested and booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and is being held without bail.
Former Olympian Kim Glass seeks change
A day after the attack, Glass posted a video on Instagram explaining what happened while also expressing her gratitude for everyone who has sent prayers and condolences.
“Yesterday, I was in downtown L.A. I had lunch; as I was leaving lunch, I was outside saying goodbye to a friend, and this homeless man ran up. He had something in his hand, he was on the side of the car in the street, and he just looked at me with some pretty hateful eyes, and as I went to tell my friend, I thought something was wrong with him before I knew it a big metal bolt-like pipe hit me. It happened so fast; he flung it from the street.”
In the video, Glass’s eye is swollen and bruised; she reported that the swelling has gone down and is starting to heal. Doctors said that her vision would not be permanently distorted. She is appreciative that things did not turn out worse.
After hearing about the assault, Jamie Davis, USA Volleyball President and Chief Executive Editor released a statement:
“USA Volleyball is appalled to learn of this weekend’s brutal attack on our Olympic medalist Kim Glass. Our thoughts are with her, and we wish her a speedy recovery.”
Despite being injured, Glass looked at the positives of this incident, saying that “maybe I am supposed to be an agent of change.” She believes things have to change, which is a blessing in disguise, as she has been talking to political leaders and politicians to voice her concerns about inflicting change.