CAUGHT ON CAMERA: Homeless man, 2 others help save San Francisco gas station clerk from choking attack

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SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Three Good Samaritans are being thanked for helping save a woman being attacked.

San Francisco police say the woman is a gas station store clerk.

The victim told officers that a suspect started choking her unprovoked.

Brian Holste
Brian Holste

The attack was caught on camera. It happened on the morning of Jan. 14 in the city’s Fillmore District.

The victim says a man had bought something at the Shell Gas Station, then returned about 20 minutes later and attacked her.

Police identified the suspect as Brian Holste.

Witnesses say they saw Holste on the floor with the woman in a choke-hold.

The three good Samaritans intervened and managed to free the victim. One of them who helped was a homeless man.

Holste was arrested on aggravated assault and burglary charges.

The motive is still not clear.

Here is the full statement from San Francisco police:

On January 14, 2018 at approximately 9:21 AM, officers from Northern Station responded to a reported battery taking place at a business on the 800 block of Turk Street. 911 dispatchers at the Department of Emergency Management advised officers that the male suspect had a female store clerk in a choke hold and then fled the scene to a building on Franklin near Eddy Street.

Upon arrival, officers were flagged down by witnesses who pointed to the suspect who was sitting on the stairs of a building on the 800 block of Franklin Street. The officers took the suspect into custody without incident. Through the course of an investigation, the officers learned that the suspect, Brian Keith Holste, age 30 of Stockton, had entered the store and grabbed the 29 year-old, female victim around the neck and began to choke her. The victim told officers that Holste had purchased an item about twenty minutes earlier and that upon returning to the store he immediately attacked her without provocation.

Witnesses told investigating officers that they saw Holste laying on the floor with the victim in a, “choke hold” as the victim was attempting to get free. The witnesses were able to get Holste to release his grip and end the attack.

Holste was booked into San Francisco County Jail on charges of aggravated assault and burglary. His booking photo and video accompanies this news release.

The SFPD commends the good Samaritans who intervened and came to the aid of the victim. Their efforts likely saved the victim from greater harm.

While an arrest has been made, anyone with information is asked to contact the SFPD 24 Hour Tip Line at (415) 575-4444 or Text A Tip to Tip411 and begin the text message with SFPD. You may remain anonymous.

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