Surveillance video from 2018 machete attack released

Crime Watch

WARNING: Footage contains graphic content. Viewer discretion is advised.

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Police have released surveillance video that captured a bloody attack inside a Starbucks where a man attacked his former girlfriend with a machete.

The attack happened on Sept. 9, 2018, when Robert Daniel Rivas chased his ex inside a Starbucks in the 5100 block of Stockdale Highway. The woman ran behind a counter in the business as she yelled for help.

Rivas followed her and began hacking at her after she slipped on her blood on the floor. He had injured her with the machete at her apartment before chasing her to the coffee shop.

A good Samaritan, Blaine Hodge, then rushed behind the counter and interrupted the attack. He later told police he meant to disarm Rivas, but he slipped on the blood on the floor. Rivas then sliced at him several times, badly injuring him.

Hodge ran outside and Rivas resumed his attack on his ex, who eventually convinced him to stop.

Rivas walked outside the Starbucks and California Highway Patrol officers who had been dining in the area took him into custody.

Last month, a jury convicted Rivas of seven charges including two counts of assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm.

Rivas is set for sentencing Feb. 19.

Blaine Hodge went on to receive the 2019 Citizen Honors Award for the Single Act of Heroism category in Washington D.C. It’s given by the Medal of Honor Society for acts of bravery.

When 17 News spoke with Hodge after the awards ceremony last year, he said he was grateful, but that no one should ignore domestic violence when they see it.

If you or a loved one needs help from domestic violence there are several phone numbers you can call and resources are available to you.

  • Call 911 if it’s an emergency.
  • You can also call the Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault’s 24-hour crisis line at 327-1091.
  • The National Domestic Violence Hotline is 1-800-799-SAFE.
  • You can also visit the Family Justice Center on Oak Street, a one-stop shop for people seeking help.

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