SANTA MONICA, CA (FOX 11) - A homeless man who was beaten over the head with bolt cutters by an alleged serial killer spoke to FOX 11 exclusively about his experience on Monday.
He requested to be called "Salam."
"Once I realized he was trying to kill me, it was like, this is it," he said.
Salam is a former barber who lost his job and is down on his luck.
He says on September 22nd, he was at a homeless encampment near Venice Blvd and Globe Ave. when he encountered Ramon Escobar, a felon and six time deportee who is now charged in the beating deaths of multiple homeless men in L.A. and Santa Monica.
"He didn't come up and introduce himself, he just came and tried to blend in with us, and to me that was a red flag like a no no" Salam said.
He said he was unaware at the time that there was a serial killer going around targeting the homeless, and when he was inside his tent, Escobar attacked.
"Got clobbered in the head with something heavy and hard, and all I could feel was the blood just dripping, cause I was bending down, and the blood was dripping into my eyes and the blows just kept coming," Salam said. "Then my adrenaline dropped and i woke up in intensive care."
Salam estimates he was beaten with the bolt cutters at least six times. He suffered a fractured skull, subdural bleeding, along with numerous gashes and fractured bones.
He says it all happened at a time when he was just about to get off the streets. Now he's left with medical bills he can't afford.
"I don't know how I survived that, blows to the head with bolt cutters, you just can't imaging the pain it feels like," he said.
Escobar is a felon who has been deported six times back to his home country of El Salvador.
He is accused of beating three homeless men in downtown LA with a baseball bat. Two of them died
He's also accused of beating Steve Cruze to death while he was sleeping under the Santa Monica Pier, and he is suspected of beating another homeless man to death near 7th and Broadway in Santa Monica.
Escobar is also a suspect in the disappearance of his aunt and uncle in Texas.
On September 24th, Escobar was arrested by police in Santa Monica. He now faces numerous murder charges, as well as charges of attempted murder.
"It was a serial killer I was facing, this guy's a murderer, a crazy one," Salam said.
Salam's family has set up a GoFundMe to help with his medical bills.
If you'd like to donate you can do so here: www.gofundme.com/jah039s-story-of-perseverance