A scuffle between a homeless man and a Venice café owner ended with the businessman losing part of his finger.
Doctors were unable to reattach Clabe Hartley's finger after the attack Saturday at his restaurant, The Cow's End, near Venice Beach.
Jonathan Lemmons, 31, was arrested on suspicion of aggravated mayhem, police said.
It all started when Lemmons, a local transient known to frequent Venice Beach, was behaving aggressively and refused leave the restaurant despite warnings, said Lt. Lydia Leos of the Los Angeles Police Department's Pacific Station.
That's when Lemmons started punching and scratching Hartley as a fight ensued, she said.
Three customers stepped in to help Hartley, who was unaware that Lemmons had bitten off a portion of his left ring finger until they pointed it out, Leos said.
"I was bleeding like an open faucet," Hartley told KTLA.
A customer found the portion of finger just before Hartley was taken to a hospital, but doctors couldn't save it. Instead, he got 40 stitches, KTLA reported.