Friday, December 18, 2020

Four indicted for hate crimes and false statements after racially motivated assault in Lynnwood, Washington

 Seattle – Four men from across the Pacific Northwest were indicted this week for federal hate crimes and making false statements in connection with a December 8, 2018, racially-motivated assault, announced U.S. Attorney Brian T. Moran and Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Eric Dreiband. JASON DESIMAS, 44, of Tacoma, Washington; JASON STANLEY, 43, of Boise, Idaho; RANDY SMITH, 38, of Eugene, Oregon; and DANIEL DELBERT DORSON, 24, of  Corvallis, Oregon, are charged with aiding and abetting one another, as they punched and kicked a Black man and making derogatory comments about his actual and perceived race at a bar in Lynnwood, Washington.  The indictment also charges the defendants with assaulting two other men.  DORSON will appear today in U.S. District Court in Eugene, Oregon.

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Washington has a long and distinguished history of prosecuting those who act on hate,” said U.S. Attorney Moran.  “Whether it is ‘The Order’ in the 1980s, the ‘Atomwaffen’ of today, or this group accused of assaulting a Black man at a local business.  These defendants will be held accountable for their criminal conduct.”

In addition to the hate crime charges, the indictment charges each defendant, separately, with giving false statements to the FBI during the investigation.  Specifically, the indictment alleges JASON DESIMAS falsely claimed that neither he nor anyone else used a racial slur during the assault; JASON STANLEY falsely asserted that he was not even in Washington on the date of the assault; RANDY SMITH allegedly lied about how he had bloodied his knuckles; and DANIEL DELBERT DORSON falsely claimed that he had not planned to attend a white supremacist’s “Martyr’s Day” observance in Washington and that he had not owned a jacket associated with white supremacy hate groups.

FBI Seattle Acting Special Agent in Charge Earl Camp said, “The FBI is committed to investigating federal hate crimes and protecting civil rights.  These violent acts motivated by bias are not only an attack on the victim, but also threaten and intimidate an entire community and are contrary to our values of equality for all Americans to live without fear.”

The hate crime charge carries a maximum penalty of ten years in prison.  The false statements charge carries a maximum penalty of five years.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until each is proven guilty.

Two of the defendants, SMITH and STANLEY, are currently in custody in Oregon and Idaho respectively on unrelated charges.  They will be brought to the Western District of Washington for arraignment.

This case was investigated by the FBI, with the assistance of the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Ye-Ting Woo and Trial Attorney Christine M. Siscaretti of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.

No comments: