AG: Resident faces stiffer hate crime penalties if convicted

Members of Black Lives Matter RI take a knee August 11, 2020 in a rally outside the home of a Barrington man facing a hate crime prosecution following a confrontation with a neighbor from the Middle East. Photo by Steve Klamkin WPRO News

BARRINGTON, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island’s attorney general says a Barrington man facing an assault charge after being caught on video yelling racial slurs at his neighbor can face a stiffer sentence under the state’s hate crimes law if convicted.

Attorney General Peter Neronha said Tuesday that 71-year-old Richard Gordon showed “hatred or animus toward the actual or perceived religion, color, race, national origin, or ancestry” of his victim.

Gordon’s lawyer says his client regrets using “racially charged language,” but maintains there was no “racial animus.”

Meanwhile, Black Lives Matter Rhode Island a staged a rally Tuesday afternoon in front of Gordon’s home.

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