A black man who was found brutally beaten in Des Moines, Iowa, says his assailants were three white men who where using racial slurs as they attacked him.
According to the police report, DaQuan Jones, 22, was going to his girlfriend’s house around 3:25 a.m. on Saturday when he was attacked. A nearby witness said she heard Jones screaming for help and found Jones lying on the ground.
“He told us [the suspects] were trying to kill him,” Tyia Campbell said, one of the witnesses. “He was bloody. He said he couldn’t breathe and thought he was dying.”
Campbell told police the assailants were still at the scene when she and her friends arrived and that the men used racial slurs against them as well. She said she heard one of them yell out, “Get out of our area; we’re going to get all of you out of here.”
DaQuan’s father, Daryl Jones, Jr. and members of the Des Moines NAACP chapter want investigators to look into the attack as a possible hate crime.
DaQuan’s father, Daryl Jones, Jr. spoke at a news conference alongside members of the NAACP on Sunday to talk about what happened to his son.
“They broke my son’s face in five places. Five,” he said. “[The suspects] know what they did. I don’t want an uproar, I just want justice.”
On Saturday evening, Des Moines NAACP president Kameron Middlebrooks sent out a press release urging black residents to “look out for each other” and requesting that police not ignore the racist nature of the attack against Jones’ attack and others like it.
“We strongly urge the DMPD and the city’s elected officials to investigate these attacks to bring about equitable outcomes for the victims,” Middlebrooks wrote.
Middlebrooks also spoke at the news conference Sunday, saying: “After speaking with [Da]Quan, his family and the witnesses that have come forward, if the story is as they state it is, then what occurred yesterday should be nothing less than a hate crime.”
Jones was immediately taken to the hospital after police arrived at the scene and found him on the ground. He is expected to make a full recovery from his injuries.