Texan Charged With|Senseless Hate Crime

     HOUSTON (CN) – A Texan knocked out an elderly black man, breaking his jaw, and recorded it on his cell phone, to see if the senseless assault would be “nationally televised,” federal prosecutors said.
     Conrad Alvin Barrett, a 27-year-old white man from Katy, allegedly filmed himself attacking the 79-year-old man, then showed the footage to an off-duty arson investigator he met at a restaurant, and asked if he had heard of the “knockout game,” CBS News reported.
     The investigator then flagged down a policeman and took him to Barrett, according to CBS.
     A criminal complaint cites comments Barrett made on his cell phone recordings, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement.
     “According to the complaint, Barrett comments in a video that ‘The plan is to see if I were to hit a black person, would this be nationally televised?'” prosecutors said.
     “The complaint further alleges Barrett claims he would not hit ‘defenseless people’ just moments before punching the elderly man in the face. Barrett allegedly hit the man with such force that the man immediately fell to the ground.
     “Barrett then laughed and said ‘knockout,’ as he ran to his vehicle and fled,” according to the U.S. attorney.
     Barrett broke the man’s jaw in two places; his victim was hospitalized for four days and had surgery, prosecutors said.
     Barrett faces up to 10 years in federal prison on hate crime charges, and a fine of up to $250,000, under the Matthew Shepherd and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act.
     Barrett’s attorney told CBS that Barrett is bipolar and heavily medicated.

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