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East County rallies against racism after second suspect arrested for hate crime

Lakeside Anti-racism rally.jpg
Posted at 10:14 PM, Apr 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-24 09:29:21-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Two teenage suspects are now facing attempted murder and hate crime charges, in connection to a stabbing last week that left a 16-year-old black girl in the hospital.

San Diego County Sheriff's deputies arrested a 15-year-old girl Saturday night after they said they found she played a bigger role than they originally thought.

As a result of the hate crime, demonstrators gathered in Lakeside to bring attention to racism.

"To draw attention to this act of violence that happened as I said very close to here because like I said in lakeside and people are comfortable acting like that. White supremacy flourishes here," said Danielle Wilkerson, co-founder of East County BIPOC Coalition.

She hoped to drive home the message in the area sheriff's deputies responded to what they have deemed a hate crime. She said the hope is that all involved are held accountable.

A sixteen-year-old black girl was stabbed while deputies say the suspects made racial comments.

Marching in the crowd was Alana Ethridge. She said the incident hit close to home- she grew up about fifteen minutes away from the scene.

"I hope that she is doing well and we're all here. We have her back. I want justice for her," said Ethridge.

Community activist Tasha Williamson said she spoke to the family and said the victim is traumatized.

"She's never going to be able to live vicariously as many other teenagers and children because of this incident that happened to her. So, she would hope that she wants everybody to come together and stand against hate because she believes that this shouldn't have happened to her and that she should not have had to endure racist slurs where she lived and where she went to school," said Williamson.

The District Attorney said there is a rise of hate crimes targeting black people and anyone who commits this type of crime will be held accountable.

The 16-year-old suspect was charged by the District Attorney with one count of attempted murder and one count of assault with a deadly weapon. Both carry hate crime special allegations.

The 15-year-old suspect was arrested by deputies on attempted murder and hate crime charges.

The district attorney explained juvenile court is focused on rehabilitation and the court will consider a variety of sentencing options.

Moving forward, the East County Biopic Coalition said it will be showing a documentary about racism in east county and will work to provide self-defense classes for women of color.