Charlotte man hurls death threat, racial slurs at Asian Market employees after being caught stealing

Charlotte man hurls death threat, racial slurs at Asian Market employees after being caught stealing
Bryan Ke
June 30, 2022
A man has been arrested for allegedly threatening employees and hurling racial remarks at an Asian grocery store in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Monday.
Surveillance footage shows the man, whom authorities identified as Robert Cooke, purportedly trying to take a razor and cotton swabs from Asian Market, according to an arrest report. He yelled threats and racial slurs at the employees who tried to stop him from leaving the store, WSOC-TV reported. 
You know, this is a misdemeanor, and when I get out in a couple of hours, I am going to come back and kill you Asians and break these windows,” Cooke can be heard saying in the surveillance video.
The man was also reportedly accused of using xenophobic remarks, telling the employees to go back to their country.
Authorities arrived at the store and arrested Cooke, who still had the items he purportedly stole at the time the police arrived.
Cooke is being held at Mecklenburg County Jail with a $26,000 bond. He has been charged with ethnic intimidation and robbery with a dangerous weapon and is scheduled to appear in court next month.
A few Asian Market employees told WSOC-TV that they are worried about their safety. They are also concerned that the incident might affect other businesses in the area. One of them also said his colleagues are now afraid to go back to work and are looking for other job opportunities.
It is better for us to have a more general understanding that we should help each other out instead of, ‘Go back to your home country,’” Yixyan Wang, an Asian Market customer from China, told WSOC-TV. “I feel a little bit frustrated. We have been through a lot. A long time of stuff like fighting against the racism.”
 
Featured Image via WSOC-TV
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