A Michigan man was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Monday, Aug. 16, in connection with a racially motivated attack last year, during which he smashed the window of a Black family’s home and slashed the tires of a car parked in the driveway.
Michael Frederick, 25, was sentenced by Judge Diane Druzinski in Macomb County Circuit Court after pleading no contest to all the charges against him.
When victims Eddie and Candace Hall expressed that they forgave Frederick, Druzinski applauded them.
“I’m in awe of your strength, wisdom and forgiveness,” Druzinski said from the bench, the Detroit Free Press reported. “I wish I was as good as people as you.”
Frederick apologized for his actions in court Monday and said, “I targeted these people because I didn’t like their political sign that they had in the window,” adding, “I think you guys are some great people and didn’t deserve this at all.”
The Halls were inside their suburban Detroit home on Sept. 9 when they heard a hissing sound at around 9:30 p.m. Eddie Hall looked out the window and saw someone hiding behind a vehicle, so he went to get his gun.
Suddenly, a rock large enough to have required two hands to throw shattered a large window at the front of the couple’s home and landed on the couch, leaving shards of glass everywhere. A Black Lives Matter sign was displayed in the window that was smashed.
Candace Hall shared the aftermath of the attack on Facebook.
“Somebody just threw a nice big rock right through my picture window. This just happened about two minutes ago,” she said in the video, showing the shattered window and a large rock resting on the couch.
“This is why: because I have Black Lives Matter in my yard,” she added.
When police arrived on the scene, they noticed that tires on three family vehicles had been slashed. Threats left on the cars read “terrorist Black Lives Matter” “get the f-ck out” “not welcome,” and a swastika.
The attack was one of three hate crimes perpetrated against the family that same week. The day before and after the incident, shots were fired into the couple’s home.
Frederick was arrested in late September and pleaded no contest in July to ethnic intimidation, discharging a firearm at a building, using a firearm during a felony and malicious destruction of property.
Candace Hall forgave Frederick on Monday, saying, “I’m not angry, I’m not. I’m forgiving.” She added, “You’re a good kid and have a chance. You made a bad choice, and we understand that. We have children ourselves. We’re not hateful people; we’re Christians.”
Last year after the attack, Candace Hall said she suffers anxiety whenever someone walks by the window, but the family has said the Black Lives Matter sign will not be taken down.