Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Friday he was "disappointed" that the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office has reportedly declined to prosecute an alleged hate incident that happened last month in Diamond Bar during a "Stop Asian Hate" rally.
- A controversial decision after a man drove right through a crowd in Diamond Bar.
- CBS2's Nicole Comstock has reaction from people who saw it all unfold.
- Investigators said they were taking this incident very seriously. So community members can't believe even though they caught it all on camera, no charges are being filed. Cars drive-through the intersection at Diamond Bar Boulevard and Grant Avenue, but two weeks ago.
Protesters were right in the middle of the crosswalk here, when this black car drove through them. The driver made an illegal U-turn and shouted racist remarks about China.
- Then he pulled over, got out, and shouted them again.
- And I related more to that feeling of walking alone and not knowing, not knowing if you had somebody who had your back. That's why Ronda Hampton organized the stop Asian heat protest. The Diamond Bar psychologist says, she's been called the n-word numerous times while taking a walk on her lunch break.
- And because we let it go, that is why it's continuing, and I'm not going to shut up.
- Especially not now, after she found out LA County DA, George Gascón isn't filing any charges against the driver. Sheriff Alex Villanueva announced it on Twitter saying, "I'm disappointed. Charges were not filed by the DA's office for lack of sufficient evidence. Though video clearly depicts the acts by the suspect, contrary to his statement of being scared. His social media post further confirm his intentions. This should be heard in court."
- The insult is this, that he does not even make a comment to the community to say, hey, I did my due diligence. I did everything I can to investigate.
- I guess that's the culture of here America.
- Vicky was at the protests too. She says, Asian communities are much more likely to let hate speech roll off their backs rather than to report it to avoid a bigger problem, and letting this driver off the hook sends a disheartening message to the victims of hate crimes.
- We lost freedom of speech, which is huge right now. And it's almost like, bigger than anything, bigger than our lives.
- And we reached out to the LA County DA's office for a comment, but have not yet heard back from them. Reporting in Diamond Bar I'm Nicole Comstock, CBS2 News.