PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — As investigators in Atlanta continue to look into the slaying of 8 people at 3 spas — including six Asian women — a Portland man is being held in custody until his trial on bias crimes begins.
Daniel Hutchens is accused of punching an Asian American in North Portland on December 15, 2020. He’s accused of punching the victim because they are Asian American. Hutchens, 38, faces 2 counts of 2nd-degree bias crime and one count of harassment.
At a release hearing Tuesday, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office succesfully argued that a Hutchens should be held in custody before his trial on bias crime charges.
During the release hearing, the President and Chairperson of the Oregon Chinese Coalition, Honcheng Zhao, provided a statement on the case:
“As a community Asians and Asian Americans have been harassed, scapegoated and simply devastated by the anti-Asian sentiment, which has been elevated by this pandemic. We want to express our profound empathy and respect for victim for what he has undergone, both physically and emotionally. Experiencing racial prejudice anywhere should not be tolerated; but Mr. Hutchens’ undeniable disrespect comes with an additional level of hostility, casting a shadow on our invaluable public transportation by spreading the fear and insecure feeling. As a community organization with its community members we will continue to support those facing the hate crimes.”
DA Mike Schmidt also released a statement about the recent attacks on Asian-Americans, including the killings in the Atlanta-area:
“The heinous murders in Atlanta are an unspeakable tragedy. While there’s still much we don’t know about these murders, we do know this – six of the eight murder victims are Asian American. Attacks on Asian communities are growing nationally. Many of these instances are rooted in hate – including some of the cases being prosecuted by this office. Hate will never have a place in our society. I stand with our Asian American Pacific Islander community. I condemn all acts of hate, and I mourn the lives lost in Atlanta and elsewhere. The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office will always hold those who commit hate crimes accountable.”
KOIN 6 News will have more information later in the day.