The incident happened the night of August 11 in a Staten Island neighborhood, according to the New York Police Department. A group made up of two Black men and two minors, one Black and one white, came back from a day at the beach when 58-year-old John Borzumato walked up to them.
Cops say the suspect, who is white, was intoxicated and brandished a knife at the group "unprovoked."
"You n***** don't belong here," Borzumato allegedly said, per a criminal complaint obtained by reporters. "You n***** have to get out of here." Borzumato allegedly pierced the vehicle's tires as the group hid from him.
The suspect reportedly dropped his knife after witnesses pulled him away from the group, but the incident didn't stop there. Police say Borzumato kept arguing with the oldest in the group, 20-year-old Nathanial Garcia, and pushed him. Garcia then punched the drunken suspect, who fell to the ground and hit his head, according to officers.
When the cops arrived, they initially placed the Black people in handcuffs since Borzumato was unconscious at the time, a relative of the victims told the New York Daily News. They were later released while Borzumato was taken to the hospital.
The 58-year-old man was charged with second-degree aggravated harassment, menacing as a hate crime, weapons possession, and harassment.
Garcia was charged with assault, and an unnamed minor faces a charge, as well, according to officials.
Janice Gonzalez, Garcia's grandmother, blasted cops over the incident in a Facebook post.
"He came at my nephew with a knife and my grandson IN ORDER TO STOP THE ASSAULT, punched the guy in the face causing the guy to fall to the ground - just one punch," she wrote, adding that the police spoke to the white family first before the victims.
Gonzalez continues: "My grandson defending my nephew and himself from a man wielding a knife and the patrol sergeant said that was MENACING!!!!!!! Since when do we arrest a black victim of a hate crime who is defending himself?"