A man was charged with ethnic intimidation after allegedly threatening to kill a female shop owner Cleveland, Ohio and “other Chinese people” at her store last March 30.
The 45-year-old suspect, identified as Dimitrius Oliver, reportedly wreaked havoc at the Sisters Gift Shop inside the Asia Plaza on Payne Avenue, tossing around goods and making threats.
In the report filed at the Cleveland police station, Oliver entered the gift shop at around 3:30 p.m. and approached the 50-year-old owner and asked if she was American.
The owner responded by confirming that she was indeed American. Oliver then said he was glad “because if not, he would kill her.” He then went on to proclaim: “I hate China!” The report added that the man went through the store aisles and made a mess by throwing different merchandise on the ground.
In an interview with Cleveland.com, the victim narrated that the man took a stack of Chinese newspapers and threw them at her. The unprovoked assault left the woman afraid as it had never happened to her before.
As the suspect was leaving, he allegedly made a hand gesture shaping his fingers in the shape of a gun, which he pointed at her, saying that he would “kill her and other Chinese people.”
Oliver would also cause a ruckus later at a different establishment nearby, where an employee helped to identify him to authorities. A warrant for his arrest was reportedly served to him on Friday, though city jail staff had no record of him being there at the time.
The suspect, who is now facing a fifth-degree felony, had a previous felonious assault charge back in 2015 in which he pleaded guilty to hurting a woman.