Police in Michigan have made an arrest in the case of an assault at a retail store that was captured on video and subsequently went viral online last month.
Damire Palmer, 18, was taken into custody Thursday by officers in Flint, Michigan, in relation to an attack at a Macy’s department store on June 15. He is facing charges of suspicion of felony assault and misdemeanor retail fraud.
In a video that went viral online, a young black man was seen assaulting a white man, who has been identified as a 50-year-old store manager.
The attacker repeatedly struck the victim, who was using a mobile phone. “Don’t touch me, n—–,” the younger man said.
The person being attacked did not fight back.
“I’m sorry,” the man repeatedly said as he was punched.
President Donald Trump shared the video of the attack on Twitter.
“Looks what’s going on here. Where are the protesters? Was this man arrested?” Trump asked.
WARNING: The following video contains language and violence that some viewers might find disturbing.
Looks what’s going on here. Where are the protesters? Was this man arrested? https://t.co/2E1UbU5vNN
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 23, 2020
Police in Genesee County, Michigan, say the man who violently assaulted the Macy’s manager is Palmer.
The attack occurred amid racial and civil unrest following the May 25 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.
MLive reported that Palmer’s brother, 22-year-old Damarquay Palmer, claimed the store manager had used a racial slur.
Police, however, have determined the attack was “unprovoked.”
Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton told The Detroit News that there is no evidence the victim of the attack used any racially charged language.
“This was an unprovoked attack on a Macy’s employee,” Leyton was quoted by the outlet last month when he first identified Palmer and announced charges.
“This behavior, as seen on the video, is unacceptable, it is criminal and it cannot be allowed,” he said. “We don’t believe any racial slur was made by the store manager, and even if there had been, it does not condone nor justify the assault by Mr. Palmer.”
WJRT-TV reported Palmer was charged with assault to do great bodily harm less than murder and faces a 10-year prison sentence if convicted.
In his mug shot, Palmer, who is described as a high school student, is seen smiling.
#BREAKING – Damire Palmer has been arrested by police. He was caught a short time ago. The 18-year-old is charged with assaulting a Macy’s employee inside the Genesee Valley Mall last month. @dsleyton confirmed my sources. #macysattack #FlintTownship #Macys pic.twitter.com/xi48z8fsJI
— Ann Pierret (@AnnPierret) July 10, 2020
Officials with Macy’s told the outlet they were “deeply saddened about the incident.”
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