Skip to Content

Commerce City Council Members Brawl at Hotel, Reports Say; Mayor Promises to Press Charges

12:01 PM PDT on May 20, 2019

Credit: Los Cerritos News

[dropcap size=big]S[/dropcap]everal elected officials on the Commerce City Council were allegedly involved in a Saturday night brawl at a desert resort, and now the mayor of Commerce says he will press charges in the incident.

Commerce City Councilman Leonard Mendoza was hospitalized after he was attacked by Commerce council colleague Ivan Altamirano during a fight involving at least seven people, including the mayor, according to reports.

The melee broke out at the Renaissance Indian Wells Resort & Spa in Indian Wells on Saturday, during a convention of local government leaders from across the state. Witnesses told Los Cerritos News that the fight started in the smoking patio when “Altamirano ran through a door and sucker-punched Mendoza.”

In a statement, Commerce Mayor John Soria said he and Altamirano were attacked during the ensuing melee and that he would be pressing charges, though he did not reveal the identity of the assailants.

“I know who the attacker are but I will refrain from naming them at this time so that the Riverside County Sheriff's Department can conduct a thorough investigation,” Soria said.

No arrests have been made.

Soria said he was made aware of a tense argument between the two councilmembers and went to defuse it. “Upon arriving, I witnessed Mr. Mendoza on the floor, apparently unconscious, and Mr. Altamirano standing nearby with a facial injury.”

He then attempted to remove Altamirano from the situation but “within seconds, Mr. Altamirano and I were attacked from behind by two individuals.”

A photo sent to Los Cerritos News, via text message by a witness at the scene, shows Mendoza apparently unconscious with what looks like specks of blood splashed at his feet.

Requests for comments from both conunclimembers’ offices were referred to a statement by the Commerce City Council. "The city has been made aware of reports of a confrontation between some city officials that took place outside of the city's jurisdiction,” the statement said. “Given that, and the fact that the city is unclear on the specifics, the city has no further comment at this time."

RELATED: 'Very Disgusted'~ L.A. Sheriff, County Deepen Public Battle Over Deputy Cliques and Rehired Badge

Already a user?Log in

Thanks for reading!

Register to continue

Become a Member

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from L.A. TACO

Spot Check: Colombian Desgranados In Echo Park, Mexican Wine Festival At Mírate, and Perverted Waffles in DTLA

Plus, a party highlighting pan-African cuisine, a new Taiwanese cookbook by an awarded local from the San Gabriel Valley, and a Little Saigon food festival that starts tonight! Welcome back to Spot Check!

September 22, 2023

This 24-Year-Old Latina Mortician Beautifies the Dead and Influences the Living

Growing up in Arleta with a first-generation family from El Salvador, Berrios admits that her family only embraced her career choice two years ago, after she started to win awards like “Young Funeral Director of the Year.” The 24-year-old works as the licenced funeral director and embalmer at Hollywood Forever cemetery. As a young person born in peak Generation Z, she's documented her deathcare journey on TikTok and has accrued more than 43K followers on the platform. 

September 21, 2023

Meet ‘Carnitas Rogelio,’ The Family-Run Stand With The Best Michoacán-Style Carnitas O.C. Has to Offer

Michoacán-raised Rogelio Gonzalez slices the cuerito (the pig skin) in a checkered pattern to ensure a light crunch in each bite and utilizes every part of the pig, from the feet to the liver and intestines, which he binds together in a braid. 

September 20, 2023

‘The Office’ Star Rainn Wilson Brought Jerk Chicken Tacos to the Picket Lines Outside of Paramount Studios

In three hours, D's Tipsy Tacos and her team passed out “roughly 100 plates” of tacos, burritos, rice, beans, nachos, and quesadillas to striking screenwriters and actors.

September 19, 2023

Five Common Plants to Avoid When Creating Your Green Spaces in L.A.

Almost every time I visit a property with landscaping issues, the problem starts with bad design: the wrong plants in the wrong place. Here's advice from a third-generation L.A. landscaper and noted taco expert.

September 19, 2023
See all posts