IRVINE — A 19-year-old man was stabbed repeatedly while making a flower delivery Monday on a quiet residential block, and police arrested three people within minutes near University Drive and the San Diego Freeway.
Matthew Schmidt of Irvine was in fair condition at Western Medical Center-Santa Ana late Monday, hospital officials said.
Lt. Sam Allevato said the motive for the attack was under investigation. But police speculated it may have followed an argument.
Schmidt "came to the door and said he had been stabbed," said Jim Hill, a physical therapist in the 19300 block of Sierra Perla Road. Hill said he and his daughter took Schmidt to their bathroom and tried to stop the bleeding and then called paramedics.
Hill said he noticed at least two wounds, a slash on Schmidt's shoulder and another in the kidney area. Schmidt was conscious but didn't say much, Hill said, "but he seemed to know who had stabbed him."
As Schmidt was being treated by paramedics, Hill said he located Schmidt's Parkview Florist van several doors away, turned off the still-idling engine and closed the open driver's side door.
Witnesses said the truck was stopped--facing the wrong way--in front of a house where no one was home. One of the occupants of that house, a longtime resident who asked not to be identified, said she was returning from work when she saw the police activity outside her home.
The attack "came as a real surprise," the woman said. "We haven't experienced anything of this nature before. It shows you that crime can happen in a quiet neighborhood."
Hill's daughter and another witness described the fleeing vehicle to police, who pulled over a black Honda Civic.
In addition to an unidentified juvenile, officers arrested Jason Fluch, 20, and Keith McCullogh, 21, both of Irvine, according to police.
The juvenile was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder, police said, and taken to Juvenile Hall. Fluch and McCullogh were being held at County Jail on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon.