Biddeford Men Face Civil Complaint After Alleged Racial Attack
Maine's Attorney General has filed a civil complaint against two Biddeford men who allegedly attacked a black man.
The complaint stems from the violent assault of an African-American man that happened last month. A.G. Janet Mills says 27-year-old Dusty Leo and 34-year-old Maurice Diggins have been charged criminally with Aggravated Assault, and also face up to 364 days in jail and a $2,000 fine for the violation of the civil injunction.
Mills says the victim was about to enter a 7-Eleven convenience store near his house when Leo and Diggins drove up in a pick-up truck. The victim had never met the two men before they confronted him and allegedly repeatedly addressed him by using a racial slur. Officials say Leo allegedly punched the victim on the side of the head, breaking his jaw. Diggins then allegedly hit the man in the back of his head, throwing him to the pavement. The victim managed to get up and run away, losing his assailants by ducking into an alley.
The Attorney General says Mainers should be shocked by the attack. "No person should be afraid to walk to a store for fear of being attacked due to the color of his or her skin," she said in a media release. "We filed this action to protect not simply this victim but any person of color who might be targeted by these defendants."
The Maine Civil Rights Act has been in place since 1992, and prohibits the threat or use of violence or property damage against any person motivated by that person's race, color, religion, sex, ancestry, national origin, physical or mental disability, or sexual orientation.