An Ohio man, who was caught on video punching a Black woman in the face outside of a bar, has been sentenced to six months in jail. While in court for his sentencing, the man apologized, saying the experience has been an “eye-opener about his drinking.”
On Monday, Nov. 21, Annalisa Stubbs Williams, an Akron Municipal Court judge sentenced Andrew Walls, who plead no contest to one count of assault and one count of disorderly conduct in October 2022, to six months and two years probation for attacking Cameron Morgan, an African-American, and her friend, while in a drunken rage on Sunday, Feb. 27.
In addition to the 180 days in the Summit County Jail, Williams fined the Kent, Ohio, man $250, WKYC-TV reports.
In the sentencing hearing, Morgan approached the bench to make her statement. She struggled to get the words out, saying the events of that night, though almost a year ago, have “heavily impacted everything that happened in my life after that.”
As she offered her “side of the story, she said, “I just hope in the end of all this, that accountability will be took. I think nobody does something like that without intent.”
She added, “I just hope there is justice… I’m a very open nonjudgmental person. I know people have issues and people go through things, but for somebody to act like that and just project such hate … I just think there has to be accountability.”
The 27-year-old was originally charged with two counts of assault and one count of possessing weapons while intoxicated for the attack in Highland Square, Cleveland 19 reported. But those charges were later reduced. Walls also said he was a victim and was fighting a group of men who verbally offended his partner, right before he struck Morgan.
In his statement before Judge Williams, he said he watched the videos several times and accepted responsibility for making the decision to go out and “drink as much” as he did.
“What I did that was, you know, completely unacceptable,” he said. “I made the decision to let my anger get ahold of me and jump out of the car and that led to the events that occurred.”
Walls then addressed Morgan and her friend, saying “Cameron and Sydney I’d like to apologize for my actions that night and my choices. It’s been an eye-opener for me about my alcohol problem and clearly an anger problem, and I’ve been taking steps to make sure that I don’t end up in a situation like this again.”
The judge was gracious, acknowledging his remarks but not swayed, especially after it was revealed that he used racial slurs, including the N-word. The judge also did not allow the earlier fight to be a variable in her sentencing.
Williams acknowledged that anything said to him and his partner prior was wrong, but did not give him license to attack the two women.
“I’m looking for something that allows me to see whether the person is remorseful for what occurred and if they take full responsibility for their actions and are accountable for their actions,” she said. “These are important factors to me when determining sentencing and up until today Mr. Walls, unfortunately, and disappointingly, I could find none of those in the report.”
She continued, “I agree with your attorney that anything that may have been said to you or to your husband in a derogatory manner was wrong terribly wrong. Those words are harmful words and should never ever be said, but you had a way, that evening, of escape.”
The judge added, “Your actions on that evening were egregious. They were reckless. They were wanton and they were just mean-spirited. The use of racial and derogatory slurs is hurtful in and of themselves, but to use them along with violence is just reprehensible it should never be tolerated in our society and our community and I just can’t tolerate it in this court,” she said, before handing down her half-a-year prison sentence.
Walls was identified by a video of the incident that was posted on social media. The viral video helped authorities identify and apprehend him.
Onlookers did not let Walls get away with striking the young woman and tackled him as soon as he swung at woman.
After being assaulted, Morgan sought medical attention for a busted lip and bruising on her face. She was being attended to by the time members of the Akron Police Department arrived to take her statement.