California man arrested after harassing Asian-American teens with racial slurs

(WSVN) – A man’s racist rant inside a California restaurant was caught on camera on Christmas morning, near San Francisco, and it was the last place and time Abigail Halili and her siblings expected to have an encounter like this.

“We heard a guy parked in his car yelling from his window, ‘Keep walking you need to get away from that store!’” said Halili.

The taunts quickly turned racial and included an obscene hand gesture.

“He just kept going on and on saying, ‘You guys are Filipino idiots. You guys probably sell cocaine,’” Halili recalled.

Thanks to social media, the Halili family quickly learned they weren’t the only Asian Americans in the East Bay area to be targeted by these racist rants.

Police said the person seen in Halili’s video is the man they arrested Monday linked to another racist and homophobic tirade at an In-N-Out Burger.

“You guys filming yourself eating? You’re weird homosexuals,” the man said on cellphone video.

Arine Kim and her friend Elliot Ha were filming a video for TikTok when they too said a man approached them at random, pelting them with insults so vulgar they tried to laugh it off.

“At the moment, I did not take it seriously, but afterward it kind of started to hit me like wow this is serious,” said Ha.

Like what happened in the other encounter, the hate speech quickly escalates.

The man in the video asked Ha if he was Japanese or Korean. Ha replied that he was Korean when the man said, “You’re Kim Jong Un’s boyfriend huh? Normally I could spit in your face that’s some Filipino [expletive].”

After receiving numerous tips, police were able to arrest a Denver man with ties to the Bay area. Both sets of victims realize the power of speaking out.

“Making it not seem like a big deal, I think a lot of Asian people, in general, do that,” said Kim. “I want to bring more awareness to this and I want other people to realize like how bad it is. I just want people to learn that hate crimes against Asian Americans is a very real thing.”

Police said the man arrested has not been formally charged.

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