Seattle report: men hit, told to ‘speak English’

Seattle police say they’re looking for a pickup truck driver who became so angry when he heard a man speaking a language other than English that he attacked the man and a friend.

Police described the victims in the Monday afternoon attack as African men. One stepped outside a store on Rainier Avenue South to talk on his cell phone. The man heard a pickup truck driver stopped in traffic yell at him to “speak English.”

According to the police report, the driver grew angrier when the man with the phone tried to say he didn’t speak English very well. Police say the driver got out of his truck, called the victim a Muslim, using a slur, and told him to “go back home.”

Police say the driver grabbed the victim and punched him twice. When the victim’s friend came out of the store, he was punched in the eye.

Associated Press, 14 January 2009