DELAND, Fla. - A DeLand man was arrested after what investigators call an unprovoked, racially prejudiced attack at a gas station in Osteen.
The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said 58-year-old Richard Burnham approached three teenagers and became hostile, aggressive and yelled racial slurs at them.
The teens told investigators Burnham smashed their car with a pipe while the teens were inside. The victims can be heard on a 911 call reporting the incident.
"We don’t know what type of weapon it was, but it was heavy, and it shattered our windows," one of the victims says.
The teens, who were on their way to the airport to pick up a friend, told deputies Burnham followed them for two miles before turning away.
Sheriff Mike Chitwood said the suspect claimed self-defense, saying the teens shot them with an airsoft gun. However, he says the investigation determined that was unlikely.
"Couldn’t show us any injuries, went in the store, got a case of beer, never told the clerk he was shot, never called 911. Didn’t do anything," he said.
Sheriff Chitwood said he would not tolerate hate crimes in the county.
"No one, no one will be subject to a crime based upon their race, gender, sexual orientation, or their religion it’s not going to happen," he said.
Burnham has since bonded out of jail. FOX35 went to his listed address but no one answered the door.
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