A mother and her two daughters were attacked and injured in a fight at Friday night that started over two missing cell phones, the attacked family said.
San Ramon police say they are investigating and looking at surveillance video of the incident. No arrests have been made.
Interviews with the family attacked, the owner of The Golden Skate, Hassan Sharifi, and San Ramon police have painted a picture of what happened last Friday.
Family members asked to not be named for fear of retaliation.
The parents dropped off their daughters, ages 14 and 12, and two of their girlfriends, ages 14 and 13, at The Golden Skate at about 8 p.m. The parents asked staff if the girls would be safe and they were told "yes," the father said.
About two hours later, they received a call from one of their daughters saying that their cell phones, stashed under a table inside their shoes, had been stolen.
While there are lockers at the facility, many skaters leave their belongings underneath benches and tables.
The father called The Golden Skate to tell them they were on their way and asked management to call the police, the father said.
When the father and mother arrived at about 10:30 p.m., the police had not yet been notified. The father then went into The Golden Skate lobby to call police.
While her husband was calling the police, the mother, 47, used an iPhone App to track the missing cell phones. She believed the cell phones might have been close by so she asked a group sitting next to their daughters if they knew where the cell phones were.
One woman became angry at the mother's inquiries and verbally threatened her, the mother said.
The 14-year-old daughter ran to her mother and said, "Please don't hurt my mommy." The mother said she and her daughters were then surrounded by a group of adult women.
The 14-year-old was then punched in the face by a woman. The attacker also grabbed by her hair, slammed her head into a table, ripped her earrings out and had a chair thrown on her, the mother said.
At about the same time, another woman threw the mother to the ground. Someone hit her in the head with her own purse, the mother said.
Later that night, the 12-year-old daughter also reported she was assaulted, telling her parents she was hit in the back of the head numerous times by an unknown object.
The daughters' two friends witnessed the attack but were uninjured, the father said.
The disc jockey intervened and took the victims into The Golden Skate office, owner Sharifi said.
"If you're looking for a hero that night, it's that DJ," Sharifi said.
The father has since watched the video of the incident, saying it lasted about 10 to 12 seconds.
The 14-year-old, who the father said had a bloody nose, eye and ear, was taken to and was released.
Police arrived shortly after the melee, the family and Sharifi said.
Lt. Dan Pratt said that the family members were unable to identify any of their attackers, but the family members disagree with that account.
The father said his 12-year-old daughter pointed out a woman who she thought was involved. The father said the officer told her she described someone else earlier and that that person didn't match the description.
"My 12-year-old daughter had the courage to take on these criminals despite being beaten for it by them, while the officers on scene seemed to have beaten a hasty retreat instead of doing a proper investigation, including detaining the on scene identification of them by the victim," the father said in an email to Patch.
The father said that overall he was "extremely disappointed" by the initial investigation by San Ramon police. He said officers were completely focused on interviewing the family and not on talking with witnesses, and thought officers should have kept everyone at the facility to take statements before letting people leave.
Lt. Pratt said officers talked with several witnesses but that they could not detain all the approximately 150 patrons at the rink that night.
"The Constitution of the United States prohibits us from detaining involuntary witnesses," Lt. Pratt said. "We can't lock all the doors and illegally hold everyone, that's false imprisonment."
Sharifi said the police were "very professional."
The Golden Skate
Sharifi said when the parents arrived at 10:30 p.m., after hearing that the cell phones were stolen, they were "very, very upset."
He said the mother made the mistake of asking others if they knew where the cell phones were, instead of waiting for police to handle the situation.
"What really disappoints me is they put other people at risk, even their own children, and for what?" Sharifi said. "For $100 (cell phones) they put the lives of everyone at risk."
"They are not welcome back here," Sharifi said.
The father said that in retrospect, it was a mistake for his wife to take the action she did but said she thought the cell phones were nearby.
Sharifi said there are "never" any incidents like this at the facility. He could only recall one other similar one, which he said happened two or three years ago, in his 16 years as owner.
In March 2011, The Golden Skate was robbed at gunpoint, .
The Golden Skate does not employ security personnel but has a sophisticated surveillance video system in the facility, he said.
"We have it to protect the children," Sharifi said.