DEARBORN, Mich. (WXYZ) — A man is facing several charges after following Black shoppers in the parking lot of Westborn Market in Dearborn and making racial slurs, authorities say.
“It’s absolutely scary,” Traci Jackson said.
She frequents the grocery store of Michigan Avenue at least once a week.
Jackson says it’s scary knowing that she could’ve been harassed outside of a grocery store because of her race.
“This is my quick in and out so I can get home to my children. So, to say that that would be deterred and someone would stay in the way of me and my children, that's extremely scary,” she said.
Dearborn police say a white man made several racial slurs at Black customers on May 13. He followed them into the parking to where he tried to hit them with his car.
“When incidents of hate go unchecked, we see what the outcomes are with these mass shooting across our country,” Dearborn Mayor Abdullah Hammoud said.
Hammoud says there is no place for racism in the city of Dearborn.
“Ignorance is the most radical thing. We have to make sure we combat hate in a unified way,” he said.
After conducting interviews and reviewing surveillance footage, police were able to identify the man as Jason Edward Lucas.
He is facing four counts of felonious assault, two counts of ethnic intimidation and habitual offender fourth notice.
“From my understanding, this individual has had similar offenses in other parts of the state,” Hammoud said.
Jackson says she’s glad the police department got on top of the situation but says unfortunately, the grocery shopping experience isn’t the same for everyone.
“Our guard has to be up. Our day to day doesn’t not look the same. We have additional concerns,” she said.
Police say Lucas was issued a $150,000 cash bond with a GPS tether.
As for the victims, Dearborn Police Department Chief Issa Shahin is commending them “in this case for coming forward and our officers for quickly bringing this individual to justice.”
Shahin in a statement goes on to say, “There is no place in our society for such reprehensible behavior and these types of incidents will not be tolerated in the City of Dearborn.”