SFPD: Homeless man helped save gas station attendant during attack

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A homeless man is receiving praise Monday night. He's among a group of witnesses that San Francisco Police are calling "good Samaritans" for coming to the aid of a woman being attacked.

Jesse Green can often be found at the Shell Gas Station on Franklin St., earning what he can washing windows. But last week, Green saw something terrible unfold right before his eyes.

Security cameras captured the moment when a man pinned down the gas station clerk and began strangling her.

Green saw what was going on and tried to intervene.

"I went inside and he's over her, he has her covered. You could barely see her unless you looked hard," said Green.

He tried to pry the man off but it eventually took another two men to pull away the attacker.

"He was locked. I mean he wasn't going to let go so like, the other guy pulled one arm and I think I pulled the other or something like that," Green added. "And he just left, just like that. Didn't say anything."

When officers arrived, the suspect was no longer there. But they eventually found him across the street, thanks to witnesses who spotted him.

Brian Holste, 30, of Stockton has been booked on charges of aggravated assault and burglary.

But officials are calling the three men who came to the woman's aid "good Samaritans."

For Green, who lives in a tent off Van Ness Avenue, downplayed that description. "Aren't we all, naturally, I mean we got to help each other when we see stuff like that right," he said. "I mean it made me start crying. It's not something to be happy on you know."

The clerk hasn't returned, but soon after the attack, Green said through the tears, she was able to say "thank you.
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