Grandmother beaten, found in San Francisco park, suffers critical injuries

An  88-year-old woman in San Francisco was attacked after she stepped out of her house to exercise and now, her granddaughter is speaking out, trying to find out who did it.

Yik Oihuang was beaten on Tuesday, following an 8 a.m. burglary at her longtime home in the Visitacion Avenue, said her granddaughter, Sassana Yee, who posted photos of her grandma on Facebook.

Since then, Oihuang has been hospitalized in intensive care, in critical condition, since she was found bloodied and disoriented in a park a few blocks away on Raymond Avenue. 

"The helplessness of elderly people, we need to be empathetic to that," said Yee, who described her grandmother as rosy-cheeked and jolly, a mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.   "She is a member of our community and we need to watch out for her and everyone else." 

Yee also lives in Visitacion Valley, and her emotional post on Facebook captured what she found at the crime scene: police cars everywhere and her beloved grandma on an ambulance gurney. 

Burglars "beat her up to a bloody pulp in the park", Yee wrote, noting that it was the second break-in at her grandma's house in a year, surmising that "they didn't find anything valuable." 

Tearfully, she made a plea: "I'm tired of this, I want there to be peace in the southeast!"

Police say they were called when the door to Oihuang's house was found ajar. 

They are not discussing a motive or timeline, or even whether anything was taken from the home, but say they have multiple locations to analyze, complicating the investigation.  

"There were no witnesses or video, at that moment, to reveal exactly what happened, so all avenues are open, " said Capt. Jack Hart, Ccmmander of SFPD's Ingleside Station.

Hart would not describe a suspect or suspects, but issued a warning: "Turn yourself in now, we are not going to stop, and we will relentlessly follow all leads until justice is served." 

Yee's social media story brought San Francisco supervisors to her side, calling for a news conference at City Hall on Wednesday, and condemning the assault as heinous. 

"We've got to put a stop to all this, this is craziness to me," said Board President Norman Yee. 

"We are laser-focused on making sure this doesn't happen again," added Supervisor Shamann Walton of District 10, "because no one should endure this level of barbarism."

The two supervisors are calling for a police substation in Visitacion Valley, and they plan to hold a community meeting to address ongoing concerns about escalating crime.

Local activists say what happened to Oihuang is not an isolated incident. 

"The people are so scared," said Marlene Tran of the Visitacion Valley Asian Alliance, noting that many elderly residents are afraid to leave their house. "We have a lot of seniors in the neighborhood, they ride the bus and they walk, and many of them have limited English. " 

The park where Oihuang was found is next to a large retirement home. 

"This is a huge shock to the community," added Tran. 

Police are casting a wide net, asking residents within a four- to five-block area to check their home security systems for video, especially street views, that might help them understand the sequence of events, and identify a suspect. 

"We are hanging in there and praying alongside my grandmother at the hospital," said Yee, "and she is only one case in so many." 

Yee said Oihuang immigrated 35 years ago, and worked as a seamstress, dishwasher, and babysitter. 
She enjoyed stepping outside almost daily, before sunrise, to do her Qigong exercises, said to create healing energy.  

"She is an immigrant from China and has survived so much, so she will survive this one too," said Yee, expressing optimism her grandmother will pull through.