Man charged with hate crime after attack on black teenager and his brother
A 24-year-old man pleaded not guilty Monday to attacking a teenager and his brother outside Irvine High School because they are black, prosecutors said.
Christopher Qu of Irvine faces one felony count of aggravated assault, one felony count of assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury and a misdemeanor count of violating the siblings’ civil rights, according to the Orange County district attorney’s office.
Prosecutors also made a sentencing enhancement allegation that Qu committed a hate crime. Qu, who is Asian, is being held on $100,000 bond.
The defendant, who was previously convicted of making criminal threats, was arrested March 30 as he fled the high school, authorities said.
Qu was carrying a metal pipe when he aggressively approached the student and began using racial slurs, said Farrah Emami, spokeswoman for the Irvine Police Department. Prosecutors said Qu also used the pipe to hit several railings.
That’s when the victim’s 24-year-old brother drove up to the school, got out of his car and tried to intervene, police said. But Qu head-butted the teen’s brother and struck his arm several times with the pipe, Emami said. Prosecutors said the teen’s brother managed to take away the pipe.
The siblings were able to escape the attack and got into their vehicle to call police.
The teen was not injured, but his older brother suffered a broken nose, bruises and cuts to his face and arms.
The bloodied pipe was found in the school’s parking lot, police said.
If Qu is convicted of the charges, he faces a maximum sentence of 19 years in state prison.
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