Authorities have now named a suspect in a recent assault case that left a Black man severely injured in Oregon.
Police officials say the attack, which occurred on Thursday, June 15, 2023, initially appeared to be a pedestrian struck by a car. However, police later determined it was a brutal assault.
Darell Preston was allegedly attacked while delivering food, according to the Portland Police Bureau. His family says he was on the phone with his wife.
Portland Fire & Rescue dispatchers directed officers from the East Precinct in Portland to the scene, but by the time officers arrived, both Preston and the alleged assailant had left the area, according to officials.
The assailant viciously beat, stomped, and called the Black food truck owner racial slurs during the unprovoked attack in front of his business, LoRell’s Chicken Shack, according to his attorney.
“I hit you, N—er. Stay on the ground!” Attorney Alicia LeDuc Montgomery quoted the attacker as saying.
Onlookers captured a bald white man assaulting Preston on the sidewalk near the business on video. Photographs taken immediately after the attack reveal the extent of Preston’s injuries, including severe facial injuries, a swollen and bloodshot eye, busted lips, and a broken nose.
The Portland Police Major Crimes Unit has identified the suspect as Daniel Thomas Warren, 40. Officials previously announced that they are investigating the case as a bias crime. However, authorities say attempts to locate and apprehend Warren so far have been unsuccessful.
Preston’s attorney has raised questions about first responders and police treatment of the case.
Police said they eventually found the victim had taken refuge in a nearby food cart once on the scene. Officers observed his injuries and offered medical assistance, but Preston declined. However, his attorney argues that the man’s injuries were so severe that his wife had to drive him to the hospital, and he hid out of fear.
Authorities have released photos of the suspect, including a mugshot from October 2021 and a screen capture from the viral video footage.
Authorities caution the public not to approach Warren but to immediately contact 911 if they spot him.