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Cal City Heroes: Three women rescue neighbor from violent attack

A woman in Cal City shakes when she sees a video of her getting beaten; says she would have died if not for the courage of her neighbors
Posted at 6:28 PM, May 10, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-10 22:29:41-04

CALIFORNIA CITY, Calif. (KERO) — A woman in Cal City says her neighbors saved her life after fighting off two attackers at her place of business.

  • A woman named Soraya says she opened her thrift store about a month ago; she went back to work on Thursday after enduring beating from two crazed attackers during the afternoon on April 30.
  • Soraya offered only her first name for this story.
  • Three women came to their neighbor's rescue saying their instincts kicked in when they heard her cries for help.


When a woman in California City fought for her life inside her own business, three neighbors came to her rescue.

I'm Steve Virgen, your neighborhood reporter.

Three women defended their neighbor against two crazed attackers... who were later arrested…

The victim, known as Soraya, says she shakes when she sees this video. She says she did not know the attackers and saw them at her thrift store previously, asking for a job or money. She said they wanted to use the copy machine during the afternoon of April 30th and that's when she was attacked.

"And then the collapsed lung, the fractured shoulder, the broken ribs. That's attempted murder. I was covering my face," Soraya said.

But while the attack was going on, women at the salon next door came to her rescue.

"And I hear her yell: help. I ran down the hallway, and I see the gentleman and lady on top of her. I managed to pull the gentleman off. And shoved him up against the wall," said Christina Robertson a stylist at Hair & Nails To Dye For Salon.

"The neighbors saved my life. They did not stop until those people were off of me and gone," Soraya said.

Cal City Police responded and arrested two people nearby identified as Lita Barnes of California City and Shelton Hickman of Norwalk, according to a CCPD press release.

"I thought I was 28 and not 68," said Diane Lynch, the salon's owner.

Diane Lynch, the owner of the salon, is also just under 5 feet tall and recovering from wrist surgery, but that did not stop her from helping her neighbor.

"I'd like to feel secure where I'm at. As long as we look out for each other, we're OK. I have such a wonderful group of people that work with me, that I'm blessed," Lynch said.

"Diane is like a mom to all of us. She's got a soft heart for everybody. Once we heard her screaming I really didn't expect any less from them to spring into action," said Ashley Marroquin, a nail technician at the salon.

Soraya continues to recover. She says her first day back to work was Thursday. I'm Steve Virgen, your neighborhood reporter in California City.

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