Texas Man Sentenced to 25 Years in Jail for Anti-Asian Attack

A Texas man who attacked an Asian family he claimed to be “Chinese and therefore responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic,” was sentenced on Thursday to 45 years in jail on hate crime charges.

Jose Gomez III, 21, of Midland Texas pleaded guilty to three counts of committing a hate crime in February of slashing a customer, their 6-year-old child, and Sam’s Club employee on March 14, 2020. 

The US Department of Justice said that Gomez had entered the store behind an Asian family with young children and followed them in the Sam’s Club store for several minutes, as he perceived them to be a “threat” because they were “from the country who started spreading that disease around.”

Gomez punched the father in the face after finding a serrated steak knife in the Sam’s Club store and bending it so that it rested against his knuckles with the sharp edge facing outward.

Gomez then found an eight-inch knife in the Sam’s Club store, turned toward two young children, six and two years old, and “slashed open” the face of the six-year-old.

The knife entered millimeters from the child’s right eye, split his right ear, and wrapped around to the back of his skull.

Gomez also stabbed a white Sam’s Club employee who tried to interfere and stop him.

Prosecutors said Gomez admitted that he attempted to murder the six-year-old child.

Kristen Clarke, Assistant Attorney for the Civil Rights Division at the Justice Department, called pandemic-driven and racially motivated acts of violence “deplorable crimes.”

“The Justice Department stands ready to use our hate crimes laws to hold perpetrators accountable… All people deserve to feel safe and secure living in their communities, regardless of race, color, or national origin,” Clarke said.

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