Long Lu

Long Lu

A man who attacked a doctor entering the Lompoc hospital a year ago has pleaded no contest to attempted murder charges and a sentencing enhancement in Santa Barbara County Superior Court. 

Long Lu, 37, of Sunnyvale was arrested a year ago after he approached Dr. Lawrence Reimer from behind, placed a cord around his neck, and pulled him to the ground, according to law enforcement officers. 

Lompoc police received a 9-1-1 call about the Feb. 26, 2019 incident, which occurred as the doctor prepared to enter a rear door at Lompoc Valley Medical Center.

Lu allegedly continued to hold the cord until Reimer passed out, police added.

At that point, the suspect grabbed the doctor’s property and ran away.  

Reimer regained consciousness and began to yell for help as witnesses saw the suspect flee the area.

A search of the area where witnesses last saw the suspect near the 1400 block of East Ocean Avenue resulted in officers finding Lu, who matched the description.  

Lu originally was charged with felony attempted murder and second-degree robbery, plus faced sentencing enhancements for attacking a victim over age 65 and use of a deadly weapon, identified as a cord in court papers.

He pleaded not guilty and not guilty by reason of insanity to the charges.

Under the deal reached Tuesday in a Lompoc courtroom, Lu pleaded no contest, which is treated the same as guilty, to an attempted-murder charge, and admitted attacking a victim over age 65.

Deputy District Attorney Stephanie Schoenburg led the prosecution team while Lu was represented by Adrian Galvan. 

Lompoc Judge Raimundo Montes de Oca ordered Lu to return to court April 7, when he is set to be sentenced to six years in state prison. 

Lu has remained in Santa Barbara County Jail since his arrest, with bail set at more than $1 million.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at jscully@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.