Mountain View

Woman Arrested Following Hate Crimes Against Asian-Americans in Mountain View

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The Mountain View Police Department has arrested a woman in connection with a string of hate crimes in the city’s downtown last month.

Police say 39-year-old Karen Inman was arrested Friday morning after she attempted to steal candy and ice cream from a Smart and Final in the 100 block of East El Camino Real.

According to Police, Inman was linked to two other incidents that were hate crimes toward Asian-Americans last month.

During an incident on February 13, Inman was accused of attempting to steal food and clothing from a store in the 200 block of Castro Street.

According to police, Inman allegedly said that she did not have to pay for the items because of the store worker's Asian ethnicity. 

Inman was also connected to a battery at a downtown restaurant around the same time.

During that incident, Inman allegedly yelled at two people, one of whom was Asian, made racial comments and spat at one of the victims.

Police say Inman was later detained but the victims did not desire prosecution. Inman was later released after police determined neither of the crimes were witnessed by their officers.

Due to the department's policy to proactively investigate any hate crimes, the investigation of the two incidents continued and the cases were reviewed at the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office.

According to police, an arrest warrant was later issued after prosecutors established that hate crime charges could be brought against Inman. 

Police do not believe Inman made any racial comments during Friday’s arrest.

“This case is both disheartening and disturbing. Mountain View is a vibrant community in many ways thanks to the diversity that exists here,” said Mountain View Police Chief Chris Hsiung.

“Hate crimes have not and will not be tolerated in Mountain View and as this case demonstrates, we take these crimes seriously and will investigate them to the fullest extent," he added.

Inman was later booked into the Santa Clara County Jail on suspicion of petty theft, robbery and two counts of violation of civil rights by force or threat.

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