DANVILLE, Calif. - DANVILLE, Calif. (KTVU) -- Police officers in Danville on Monday were reassuring the public that a popular trail is safe to use a day after a man was injured badly enough in a fight with a teenager that he ended up in the hospital.
People are on Ironhorse Trail all day long.
The man was on the path around midnight on Sunday morning when he got into an altercation with several teenagers who were in a parking lot behind San Ramon Valley High School.
Normally, Ironhorse Trail doesn't get much more peaceful than when it runs through sleepy Danville.
"Perfectly calm and safe, I see the same people every day," said Theresa Loehr as she walked the trail.
But early Sunday morning, a fight erupted at Love Lane.
"It's worrisome. You got to watch out for yourself," exclaimed Eddie Parvizi as he stood with his bicycle.
A father was riding his bike on the trail heading home from work when he encountered several teenagers hanging out in parking lot adjacent to the trail.
Somehow, the man and one teen got into an argument that turned violent.
"Some words were exchanged between the two parties, and then it turned into a fight," explained Danville Police Chief Steve Simpkins.
The man ended up in the hospital with some kind of facial injuries.
"If someone in a fight ends up with severe injuries in the hospital, it doesn't really matter what started it, the end result should not be hospitalization," added Simpkins.
KTVU met a teenager who said he was in the group that had the conflict with the man. The teen explained he was the one who said something to set off the man. But then, he says, the man would not leave them alone.
"My friend just gets up to talk to him and was like, 'Sorry man, we didn't mean to disrespect you.' And he keep coming at us," said the teen. "He kept walking towards my friend. And eventually my friend just got tired of him walking towards him, so he decked him."
Danville Police said the unidentified teenager is being charged with felony battery. But the teenager says that shouldn't be happening.
"I feel like the man should be charged, to be honest. Because we told him we were 16. We were underage minors and he didn't care," explained the teen. "And he threatened to kill us and we were like alright. I feel like he should be charged and my friend, his charges should be dropped."
People who use the trail are concerned for their safety.
"It's alarming to know you can't ride down something right in your neighborhood without having to look around and really wonder whether you are safe or not," said Nancy Riley of Danville.
Late in the day, the Police Chief told KTVU the investigation was far from over and they're still trying to fully determine who is at fault.
The man is out of the hospital and recovering.
The police emphasize this was an isolated incident and that Ironhorse is a safe trail for everyone.
Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact Danville police Sgt. Brian Sliger at (925) 314-3700 or email@example.com.