An investigation is underway after a man in Diamond Bar drove through a group protesting against Asian American-Pacific Islander hate crimes Sunday.
The episode that unfolded around noon at the intersection of South Diamond Bar Boulevard and Grand Avenue is now being investigating as a hate incident as well, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department confirmed.
Video of the incident posted to Instagram showed the driver of a black Honda Civic driving through the intersection full of marchers, then making a U-turn and driving through a second time. Then he pulls over and yells, “F— China, f— you,” at protesters.
No injuries were reported.
Investigators confirmed the driver shouted profanities and made racial remarks at the demonstrators before leaving the scene.
The man’s license plate was captured on the video posted to Instagram. Authorities have not identified the driver, but he was described as being a white man in his 50s.
The hate incident investigation is being presented to Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office for possible charges, sheriff’s officials said in a news release Monday afternoon.
The incident occurred as community leaders held rallies in cities across America to speak out against hateful acts and to mourn the killings of eight people, including six women of Asian descent, in Atlanta last week.
The group Stop AAPI Hate says there have been more than 350 hate incidents in Los Angeles alone since the pandemic began about a year ago.
In a tweet, Sheriff Alex Villanueva thanked witnesses who “came forward to report this hate incident.”
“Hateful acts like this are not welcome in Los Angeles County and must STOP!” Villanueva tweeted.
The population of Diamond Bar, about 25 miles east of downtown Los Angeles, is more than 58% of Asian origin, according to U.S. Census data.
Anyone with information about the driver or the incident can the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Walnut/Diamond Bar Station at 626-913-1715. Those who wish to remain anonymous, you may call “Crime Stoppers” at 800-222-TIPS (8477).