Cincinnati Police Want Hate Crime Charges Filed in July 4 Attack

Ray Jablonski, Cleveland, July 8, 2015

Cincinnati police want hate crime charges filed in the Fourth of July beating of a man in the city’s Fountain Square.

Police Chief Jeffrey Blackwell has asked Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters to reconsider hate crime charges in the beating of Christopher McKnight, 27.

McKnight was a bystander as a melee broke out on Fountain Square about 11 p.m. Saturday just as a hip-hop concert was ending, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported. {snip}

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Seven people, including three juveniles, were arrested. In addition to McKnight, two officers were injured.

Police said McKnight suffered serious injuries, some internal, and was released from the hospital late Sunday, WCPO-TV reported. He suffered a broken nose and concussion in the beating.

Cincinnati Police Officer Alicia Essert called the beating “anti white” in the incident report, but at a news conference about the incident, Cincinnati Police Capt. Mike Neville backed off that claim, calling it a “mistake,” The Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

A video showing the aftermath of the beating showed McKnight lying on the ground, his face covered in blood. It was viewed hundreds of thousands of times on Facebook, WCPO-TV reported.

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