The FBI announced back in February that they would be looking into whether or not the agency would file hate crime charges against a Kansas man that opened fire on two Indian men in an area bar. Before the shooting, witnesses said that Adam W. Purinton was kicked out of the bar for shouting racial slurs at the men before asking “whether they were staying here illegally.” He later returned with a gun, reportedly shouting “get out of my country” before firing multiple rounds, killing Srinivas Kuchibhotla. The Justice Department confirmed on Friday that Purinton will indeed be indicted on federal hate crime charges in addition to numerous other charges, including murder according to The New York Times:
The indictment accuses Mr. Purinton of shooting and killing one of the Indian nationals, Srinivas Kuchibhotla, 32, “because of his actual and perceived race, color, religion and national origin.” It also charged that he committed the same crime against the second Indian national, Alok Madasani, who was wounded but survived. Both men worked as engineers for Garmin, a GPS navigation and communications device company.
A third count in the indictment accuses Mr. Purinton of violating a federal firearms statute by shooting at the two Indian men and the third man who tried to confront him, Ian Grillot.
If convicted, Purinton could face the death penalty if prosecutors so choose to ask for it. In an interview with The New York Times, the widow of Srinivas Kuchibhotla, the man shot to death by Purinton, expressed her reaction to hearing about the additional charges:
“It is a reminder to me that Srinivas is not here with us, but I am happy that things are moving along,” said Ms. Dumala, 32. “The federal charges will give us national visibility to help spread the message of reducing hate crimes. My belief that justice will be served has gotten one step closer.”
(Via The New York Times)