Federal hate crime charges added in wake of assaults on Orthodox Jews

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A resident of Manchester has been charged with federal hate crimes following a series of assaults on members of the Orthodox Jewish community in Lakewood and Jackson, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger and Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the U.S. Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division announced on April 20.

Dion Marsh, 27, has been charged with four counts of violating the federal Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act and one count of carjacking, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

With respect to the hate crimes violations, Marsh is charged with willfully causing bodily injury to four individuals and attempting to kill and cause injuries with dangerous weapons to three of those individuals, all because they are Jewish.

Marsh is in custody on related state charges and will make his initial appearance on the federal charges on a date to be determined, according to the press release.

According to documents filed in the case and statements made in court, at 1:18 p.m. April 8, Marsh forced a visibly identifiable Orthodox Jewish man out of his car in Lakewood, assaulting and injuring the man in the process.

Marsh took control of the man’s car and drove away. A surveillance video in the area captured Marsh arriving in the area prior to the carjacking and assault.

At 6:06 p.m., Marsh was in Lakewood driving a different car when he deliberately struck another visibly identifiable Orthodox Jewish man with the vehicle, attempting to kill the man and causing him to suffer several broken bones.

At 6:55 p.m., Marsh, once again driving the vehicle he had stolen from the first man, attempted to kill another visibly identifiable Orthodox Jewish man. Marsh used the stolen vehicle to deliberately strike the man, who was walking in Lakewood.

Marsh then got out of the vehicle and allegedly stabbed the man in the chest with a knife, causing the victim to suffer a stab wound and other injuries.

At 8:23 p.m., Marsh, still driving the vehicle he had stolen from the first man, used the vehicle to deliberately strike another visibly identifiable Orthodox Jewish man who was walking in Jackson, attempting to kill the man and causing him to suffer several broken bones and internal injuries.

At 12 a.m. April 9, law enforcement officers arrested Marsh at his residence in Manchester.

The three hate crimes violations charging Marsh with attempting to kill those individuals each carry a statutory maximum term of life in prison and a $250,000 fine, according to the press release.

The hate crime violation charging Marsh with assaulting the other individual carries a statutory maximum term of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, according to the press release.

The carjacking charge carries a statutory maximum term of 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, according to the press release.