A New York woman says she’s scared to leave her home after a group of white nationalists nearly ran her car off the road before attacking her and calling her racial slurs. State police have since arrested two suspects involved in the alleged attack.
Phillip O. Quandt Jr., 50, and Kristen P. Wright, 51, were both arrested on Thursday and charged with second-degree criminal mischief and reckless endangerment, according to Newsweek. The duo also faces one count of menacing in the second-degree for allegedly terrorizing a Black mother and her son.
Natia Shim said she and her 17-year-old son were on their way to Latham Farms to fill out job applications for the high school senior when a green truck with lights mounted on top suddenly rammed their car into the shoulder lane. Frightened, Shim and her child ducked down in their seats as she waved for the truck to just go around them.
Moments later, she said that same truck cut them off at the exit ramp.
“They tried to run us off the road saying, ‘You [n*****], get the [f***] out of our country,’ and we were like distraught because we didn’t know exactly what was going on,” she told local station WNYT.
Shim said at least three men and two women, one older and one younger, hopped out of the truck and started destroying her mirrors, banging the car with a bat and even smashing one of her windows with a frying pan, a detail she later learned from witnesses. The attack unfolded all while the group screamed threats and racial slurs at the mother and her son.
“They’re screaming, ‘We are the white supremacists,’ and n*****s do not belong in their country,” Shim said.
Her son managed to escape the chaos and dialed 911. New York State Police soon arrived and questioned Shim about the incident at the station. In that same time, at least seven eye-witnesses called to back up her claims, WNYT reported.
Shim said police also got a call from the perpetrators themselves, admitting to the attack.
“The people that did it said, ‘Oh, we thought that her vehicle was the vehicle who robbed my son for a radio a day prior in Watervliet,’ ” she explained.
The case of “mistaken identity” has left the mother with nearly $3,000 in damage and no sense of security in her own home. She even thought she saw the suspects’ truck drive past her home on Sunday. With no money to make the repairs, Shim said she has no choice but to pack up and move her two sons.
“They took it in their own hands and chased down the wrong car from Troy to Latham to kill me and my son. How are we supposed to feel safe?” she asked WNYT.
New York State police are investigating the incident and say officials are still taking sworn depositions from witnesses.