A white man who was caught on camera yelling racial slurs before assaulting a black woman in Akron, Ohio, has been charged by police in connection with the incident.
Andrew Walls, 26, has been charged by police with possession of a firearm while intoxicated and assaulting the 23-year-old Black woman after video footage captured Walls hurling the N-word at her before physically attacking her.
According to the Akron Beacon Journal, the Black woman and her friend were walking along the sidewalk in Akron's Highland Square neighborhood after midnight Sunday when they came upon a group of about five men fighting.
'N-gger B-tch, Shut Your Mouth'
The video footage, shared on Twitter, shows two men leaning against a tavern as three other men are involved in a scuffle. All are white. Walls, seen in a green button-up shirt and boots, then falls to the ground.
"F-cking n-ggers," Walls is heard saying after he notices he is being filmed by the victim and her friend. "N-gger b-tch, shut your mouth," he says before punching the woman in the face. Bystanders then rush to the woman's defense as they square off with her assailant and the men with him. Watch the video below:
The father of the victim said the man dragged his daughter into the street by her hair after the punch. Witnesses told the Beacon Journal that they observed a firearm under the man's shirt, tucked into his belt, during the fight.
After the video went viral, Walls was identified as the Vice President of the Akron chapter of the far-right group Proud Boys by social media users.
Walls Could Face Additional Ethnic Intimidation Charges
The victim and her father reported the attack to Akron police on Sunday afternoon and provided them the video as evidence. Charges were pressed and the warrant was issued for Walls sometime after.
Capt. Dave Laughlin said Walls called Akron police around 9:30 p.m. Sunday to agree to turn himself in. Authorities in Wayne and Portage counties had been knocking on doors into the evening Sunday trying to help officers in Akron find Walls, as reported by the Akron Beacon Journal.
Walls could face additional charges over his used of racial slurs, according to Capt. Laughlin. "The investigation is actively ongoing to determine if additional charges are appropriate." Because of the use of racial slurs, police are exploring a possible ethnic intimidation charge.
The severity of the young woman's head injuries could also elevate the assault charge to felonious assault. Her father said she suffered a concussion, which can be life-threatening if not treated. She was unable to eat and blacked out once during the day, he said. She also suffered a split lip from the assault.