The 49-year-old beat Donald Bolding with the weapon after the panhandler showed the occupants of a car Lee was driving a tattoo of a stick-figure couple having sex. After driving away, Lee returned and gave Bolding a broken left forearm and several cuts to the head by beating him.
“Apologize. You showed disrespect,” Lee reportedly said during the incident, according to City News Service.
“I’m befuddled. I’m like, ‘What are you talking about?’ That’s when he hits me with the tire iron,” Bolding said during an earlier hearing. “I’m trying to cover my head because he’s swinging the tire iron.”
When the guilty verdict was returned, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Henry Hall declared Lee a "significant threat to the community" because he allegedly threatened a witness who had seen what happened.
During closing arguments, Deputy Dist. Atty. Bobby Zoumberakis reminded the jury about that threat.
"Do you remember the moment when David Lee stood on the witness stand and told us he'd been threatened?" Zoumberakis asked. "'I'm going to cut the throat of your mother, your wife, your daughter and you.' And remember how the air left the room because you could tell how scared David Lee was?"
The seven-year sentence was the maximum that Lee could have received. Lee is no longer involved with Pinkberry.
[Los Angeles Times]
[City News Service]