- Associated Press - Friday, July 5, 2019

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - A St. Paul man is accused of a racially motivated assault on a Metropolitan State University employee.

Fifty-nine-year-old Steven Parker was charged Friday with third-degree assault for an attack that court documents say was sparked by the victim’s “actual or perceived race, color, or religion.”

It’s the first time the Ramsey County attorney’s office has charged someone with bias-motivated assault since the Minnesota Legislature created an enhanced penalty provision in 2016 for felony assaults.

The complaint says the 55-year-old university employee, who sustained broken bones to his face, identified Parker from a photo line-up,

Parker also was charged with simple robbery in connection with an earlier incident in which he allegedly made racist comments to a Walgreens manager who accused Parker of shoplifting.

Jail records do not list an attorney for Parker.

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