Two Iowa men arrested in brutal, 'racially motivated' assault of Black man
DES MOINES - Two Iowa men were arrested in connection with the attack on a 22-year-old black man who was racially motivated, according to Darquan Jones, his family, and the Des Moines NAACP.
Dale Lee Millard was arrested on Thursday morning and charged with willful harm that caused serious injuries. 28-year-old Millard "admitted" to the attack in May, which began near his property on 100-block E Titus Avenue and ended up in a nearby creek bed, police reports.
During a press conference on Friday morning, Des Moines police said an arrest warrant had been issued against a second suspect in the case. Jesse James Downs, 27, turned around a few hours later at 1 p.m. and was charged with willful harm that caused serious injury.
The deliberate allegations of injury are punished with up to 10 years in prison.
Dale Lee Millard
22-year-old Jones suffered multiple facial fractures, a broken wrist, and other injuries that required 10 stitches during the attack. He said he was suffocated, beaten several times and dragged to the stream where his head was kept under water.
Jones informed the registry that he was on his way to his girlfriend's house around 3:25 a.m. on May 16 when at least two white men attacked him and thought he was trying to break into a nearby house.
Jones gave the men his name, he said, but they attacked. He tried to run away from them, but they caught up with him in a nearby field, he recalled, where he was choked and beaten several times.
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"I couldn't breathe, I kept going black," he said. "I could only see my whole life going in and out, in and out."
The men dragged him to a nearby body of water - Jones described it as a stream - and kept his head under water to drown him, he said.
Darquan Jones said he heard the tail of a gun before two women who heard his screams from a nearby apartment went outside to see what was going on.
He said when the women got there, the suspects yelled at them with racial insults and ran away.
One of the women, Tyia Campbell, 40, told the registry that the suspects had shouted that "they have to get out of our area, we'll get you all out of here."
The police arrived at the scene and spotted Jones lying on the floor with serious injuries.
Jones has expressed the continuing trauma of the attack and claims that after what happened to him, he will never be the same man. But now that arrests are being made, his father, Daryl Jones Jr., said his son is smiling again.
"It's a blessing," he said. "Quan is really returning to Quan."
The punishment for hate crime in Iowa is a slap on the wrist, says Jones' father
Jones 'father, Daryl Jones Jr., and Des Moines' NAACP said in a press conference the day after the attack that they would expect hate crime charges to be brought up if detectives found the motive for the attack to be fueled by racism .
"After talking to Quan, his family and the witnesses brought up, what happened yesterday should be nothing less than a hate crime if the story is as it claims," said Kameron Middlebrooks, president of NAACP in Des Moines, said at the press conference on May 17th.
During Friday's press conference, Jones Jr., Middlebrooks, and House Representative Ako Abdul-Samad pointed out shortcomings in Iowa's hate crime law.
"Justice is all I ever wanted," said Jones Jr. He described the Iowa punishment for hate crime as a "punch on the wrist."
"Our hate crime laws in Iowa have no teeth," said Abdul-Samad, who is drafting laws that increase punishments for hate crime attacks from an offense to a C or D crime, depending on the severity of the crime.
The police initially said they would not call the attack racially motivated until the suspects were found and their motives determined. Parizek said at the press conference on Friday that they still cannot describe the attack as racially motivated, and pointed out how the Iowa laws are written.
"The way hate crime laws are written must be a motive," Parizek said, adding that most crimes do not require a motive to bring charges.
"It is pretty obvious to all of us that the suspects out there show a lot of ignorance, but that's not the standard for filing the charges," said Parizek. "Ignorant statements do not result in charges under the Iowa Law."
Darquan Jones (right) speaks during a press conference with his father Daryl Jones Jr. on May 19, 2020 in a family residence. 22-year-old Jones was attacked in an attack by three white men in the early morning of May 16, and his family said he was racially motivated, resulting in five facial fractures and a broken wrist. Jones said there was an attempt to drown him in a nearby stream and at least one attacker repeatedly used racial insults.
Down's attack history
In August 2019, Downs was charged with disorderly behavior, including fighting or violent behavior and drinking alcohol in a public space at the Iowa State Fairgrounds after being observed by officials as "the main attacker in a physical clash that resulted in the knocking of goals." , as well as a trash can and a woman ... are thrown to the ground, "says police reports.
The same female victim recently filed an application to alleviate domestic abuse against Downs on June 8, claiming that he had previously threatened, beaten, strangled, and pulled her hair.
Jesse James Downs
In June 2017, Downs was one of two people charged with assault and behavior disorders after a long dispute with a McDonald's employee.
Follow Andrea Sahouri on Twitter: @andreamsahouri.
This article originally appeared on the Des Moines Register: Des Moines men arrested in a racially motivated attack on Darquan Jones
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