A man seen on video in July harassing a nonwhite couple in traffic, yelling “white power” and performing a Nazi salute, has been charged with a hate crime, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office announced.
Gregory Howell, 29, and his wife Rachel Howell, also 29, were at the center of a video that went viral over the summer for all the wrong reasons.
According to Itzel Lopez, who recorded the encounter, she and her boyfriend were driving in L.A. when a truck that had been following behind suddenly swerved in front of them at a red light, KTLA reported in July.
The Howells hopped out of the truck and launched into a racist tirade against Lopez and her boyfriend, who is Black.
Rachel Howell can be heard saying “only white lives matter” by the passenger side of the car,
At one point, Gregory Howell grabs a shovel out of the truck bed and begins hitting the couple’s vehicle, continuing to strike it as the couple drives away, police said.sonos sonos One (Gen 2) - Voice Controlled Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in - Black read more
Howell is being charged with assault with a deadly weapon, vandalism, and a “special hate crime allegation,” according to the district attorney’s office. If convicted, he could face a maximum sentence of seven years and eight months in prison.
Howell’s wife is not facing any charges, as there was “insufficient evidence” for a case against her, a spokesman told KTLA.
Police are still investigating the incident, the release said.
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