HOUSTON (CBSDFW/CNN) – After an attack on a north Houston store owner was caught on camera, the Harris County District Attorney’s Office is working to determine if it was racially motivated, according to KHOU TV.
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Jung Kim owns Uptown Beauty Supply on Kuykendahl. She said on March 17, five women came into the store and knocked over some wigs. Kim asked them to stop playing around, and on their way out of the store, her son said he heard one of the women say, “Asian people shouldn’t be in the Black market.”
“We shouldn’t be selling wigs or something like that because we are Asian. That’s what they were saying,” Sungjum Lee said.
Less than a minute later, the women returned and that’s when punches started flying and Kim was knocked to the ground. Kim said she was punched in the nose while the women were calling her “Asian” and “Chinese.”READ MORE: Plano Takes Next Step Toward Farm-Inspired Mixed-Use Development, Haggard Farms
Two of the women were arrested. Daquiesha Williams, 22, is charged with assault and 24-year-old Keaundra Young is charged with aggravated assault. Authorities said Young tried to run over people in the parking lot. Both women deny culpability.
“I am not sure if it was racially motivated but one thing I can tell, no matter what, racial or anti-Asian or racism, no matter what, the violence is not alright,” Lee said.
Neither the Houston Police Department nor the Harris County District Attorney’s Office is calling the incident a hate crime. They said they’re still investigating to see if it meets the criteria. According to Texas law, they have to prove the victim’s race was the motivation for the attack.
Williams said the incident played out differently than Kim and Lee said. She said she was the one who was targeted inside the store. She’s due in court on Thursday morning.MORE NEWS: 300+ Astroworld Festival Lawsuits To Be Handled By 1 Texas Judge