In Cincinnati, Ohio, a man is facing federal hate crime charges after allegedly assaulting an Asian student.
A grand jury indicted Darrin Johnson, 26, this week on federal hate crime charges stemming from an incident near the University of Cincinnati in 2021 in which he allegedly attacked an Asian victim.
During the assault, Johnson, who is Black, allegedly told the victim to “go back to your country.”
“You brought the kung flu here,” Johnson allegedly said. “You’re going to die.”
In the attack, Johnson allegedly threatened to kill the victim, and charging documents state that he punched the victim in the head, causing him to fall and hit his head on a parked car’s bumper.
A concussion and facial lacerations were among the injuries suffered by the victim.
In October 2021, Johnson pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault and criminal intimidation and was sentenced to a year in jail.
If Johnson is convicted in federal court, he could face ten years in prison.
Over 9,000 anti-Asian hate crimes have been reported since the Coronavirus pandemic began, according to a report released last year by Stop AAPI Hate.
The New York City Police Department reported earlier this year that hate crimes against Asians rose 343% in 2021.
Biden signed the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act into law in 2021, which created a new position within the Department of Justice to expedite the review of potential COVID-19-related hate crimes.
The bill also expanded efforts to make the reporting of hate crimes more accessible at the local and state levels.