A decorated Iraq War veteran says he was attacked by a group of teens while eating at a Washington, D.C.-area McDonald’s, who asked him if he thinks “black lives matter” before assaulting and robbing him, WJLA (Washington) is reporting.
Chris Marquez says he was having supper at McDonald’s in the northwestern part of Washington, D.C. Friday night when a group of African-American teens approached him and started taunting him.
“They asked me if I believe that black lives matter. I felt threatened and thought they were trying to intimidate me, so I figured I’m just going to keep to my food, eat my food, and hopefully they’ll leave me alone. And because I wasn’t respond back to them, they were calling me a racist.”
What happened next is unclear, as far as the veteran is concerned. Thanks to some help from the manager of the McDonald’s, who checked security camera footage, Marquez pieced together what happened next. The veteran was able to leave the building, and made it as far as the parking lot.
“As soon as I walked out of the McDonald’s I got hit in the back of the head,or the side of the head. I just dropped to the ground, and he says I looked unconscious.”
The assailants stole Marquez’ credit cards and about $400 in cash. They tried to use at least one of his credit cards, according to USMC Life.
Marquez was able to take a cab back to his apartment, but later decided to go a hospital. He was treated for head trauma and injuries to his eye.
The Black Lives Matter movement, according to its own website, arose in 2012 after black Florida teen Trayvon Martin was shot and killed by white neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman, in what appears to have been a racially motivated attack.
The movement has since gained strength in the wake of several well-publicized incidents involving killings of African-Americans at the hands of police, including the killing of 12-year-old black youth Tamir Rice in Cleveland by a white police officer; the killing of black youth Mike Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, by a white police officer; and other high-profile incidents.
The movement has, unfortunately, been associated with violence on certain occasions. For example, at a November 2015 Dartmouth College protest, Black Lives Matter protesters allegedly shouted racial epithets at white students, and even assaulted some of them, according to this Inquisitr report.
— Total Frat Move (@totalfratmove) November 17, 2015
Injured Marine Corps veteran Chris Marquez believes that he was the victim of a hate crime, saying that his assailants deliberately targeted him because he is white.
“I believe this was a hate crime and I was targeted because of my skin color. Too many of these types of attacks have been happening against white people by members of the black community and the majority of the main stream media refuses to report on it.”
Interestingly, Chris Marquez’s service in the Marine Corps not only earned him a Bronze Star for valor, but also made him the subject of a statue. In November 2004, Marquez and his unit were conducting a house-to-house search for insurgents in Fallujah, Iraq, when they came under heavy fire. An L.A. Times reporter captured an image of a bloodied Marine being carried out of the house by Marquez and another Marine. The incident became known as the “Fallujah Hell House” firefight, and the iconic photograph has been immortalized in a statue that now stands at Camp Pendleton, California.
New statue unveiled of then-1st Sgt. Bradley Kasal coming out of the “Hell House” in Fallujah http://t.co/rR9eJc45pt pic.twitter.com/bW0qzCF2sI
— Paul Szoldra (@PaulSzoldra) November 22, 2014
As of this writing, the injured veterans’ assailants have not been captured.
[Image via Shutterstock/carl ballou]