A Colorado man was arrested after a stabbing in which the assailant called out “black lives matter” before stabbing the victim, according to news reports.
Steve Sinclair, 30, who is black, faces potential first-degree murder and hate crime charges, according to KUSA-TV in Denver.
The charges stem from a Tuesday incident in Aurora, Colorado, in which Michael Conner, 29, who is white, was stabbed while walking his dog. He suffered a collapsed lung and other injuries.
Conner told police that his attacker yelled “black lives matter” before the attack, KUSA reported.
According to an arrest affidavit cited by the station, witnesses told police that Sinclair was overheard to tell Conner, “I’m going to kill you and your dog.”
It was unclear what, if anything, provoked the attack.
One witness said Conner tried to flee and used a stick to defend himself, KUSA reported.
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An Aurora police statement cited by KDVR said Officer Alexander Diz was approached by Sinclair upon his arrival outside the apartment complex where the incident took place.
The document said blood was visible on Sinclair’s hands and chest.
The attack comes as the country is focused on violence in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and Minneapolis, where incidents this week between black suspects and police officers have sparked widespread rioting, looting and arson.
In Kenosha, the shooting of Jacob Blake by a police officer on Sunday remains under investigation, but has sparked days of unrest, including brutal violence.
In Minneapolis, rioting erupted again Wednesday after the suicide of a gunman being sought by police in connection with the killing of another man. The gunman’s suicide sparked rumors that he had been shot by police, kicking off a new frenzy of violence in the city where the death of George Floyd in police custody on May 25 set off massively destructive rioting in Minneapolis and throughout the country.
After police arrived on the scene of Tuesday’s stabbing in Aurora, according to KDVR, Sinclair continued to say “black lives matter” after Office Alexander Diz arrived. He disregarded a command to sit on the curb and asked Diz if Diz black lives matter.
Sinclair admitted the stabbing, the arrest affidavit states, according to KCNC-TV.
“I stabbed him, I’m a psychopath,” the document quoted Sinclair as saying, KCNC reported.
After Sinclair refused to obey police orders, Diz said he would have to tase Sinclair unless he cooperated, KDVR reported.
Sinclair “insisted that we should shoot him, and then advised us to tase him,” Diz stated in a report, according to the station.
Sinclair was eventually handcuffed and transported from the scene without any further incident.
Sinclair was jailed on suspicion of attempted first-degree murder and a bias-motivated crime causing bodily injury.
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