According to the Ontario Police Department, a 48-year-old African American man was attacked and stabbed repeatedly by a white man while visiting an Arby’s in the Idaho border.
According to police, the crime was a hate crime.
The police said that the stabbing occurred at the Arby’s and Pilot truck stop in Ontario at around 9:40 am on Saturday.
Authorities say the victim was Ronnel Hughes, who has just newly moved to Ontario from North Carolina and was at the Arby’s asking for employment. Hughes was located at the scene by police with multiple stab injuries to the neck area.
When police reported at the scene, several Arby’s employees were keeping back the suspect, was identified as 26-year-old Nolan Strauss of Nebraska. Strauss, who is white, is a truck driver for the May Trucking Company.
Deputies say that the investigation discovered that Hughes was sitting down at the Arby’s and was attacked by Strauss without provocation or warning. Strauss attacked the 48-year-old with a knife, and Hughes tried to fend off the attack. Many of the Arby’s employees then walked in and defeated Strauss. No other were hurt in the attack.
Police state there’s no sign that Hughes and Strauss knew each other or talked before the attack.
The 48-year-old man is now in stable condition at an Idaho hospital. Police did not say in which hospital he is kept.
The investigation about the case is still ongoing, with the Ontario Police Department, the Malheur County Sheriff’s Office and Oregon State Police all involved, but police state “the reason for the attack tends heavily towards a racially driven crime.”
Strauss is held in the Malheur County Jail and will probably be charged with assault, bias crime, and attempted murder.