A despicable hate crime has resulted in the conviction of three white men who attacked a black man at a bus stop in downtown Houston back in August 2011. This is the first conviction of its kind in Houston, and hopefully the last. It began when four men, all shirtless cornered a man just because he was black, according to chron.com.
Charles Cannon, 26, Michael McLaughlin, 41, and Brian Kerstetter, 32, attacked Yondell Johnson while he was waiting for a bus. The four men approached him and asked for the time; when Johnson said he did not know, they started using the "N" word repeatedly while surrounding him and attacked him. One grabbed his ankles until he fell, then they all started jumping on him, and continued, even after he was unconscious. What a terrifying experience for Mr. Johnson, who had just celebrated his birthday and had visit with his daughter.
Mr. Johnson said, "I hear people in the background saying, 'Get off of him! Leave him alone!' and someone tried to help me out by trying to run over one of them with a car and everything," according to the local news. The witnesses may have saved Mr. Johnson's life with their support and quick thinking.
Prosecutors dismissed charges last month against a fourth defendant, Joseph Staggs, 49, who testified against the other three. According to court documents, three of the defendants had various white supremacist tattoos.
Thankfully, these thugs will get a harsher sentence (up to 10 years each) for the added "hate crime" charge, which is well deserved.