Portland man accused of bias crime pleads ‘not guilty’ to intimi - KPTV - FOX 12

Portland man accused of bias crime pleads ‘not guilty’ to intimidation charges

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Rick Sorrell faces three charges of second-degree intimidation stemming from a May incident involving a Muslim couple who claim he yelled at them and made threatening hand gestures. (KPTV) Rick Sorrell faces three charges of second-degree intimidation stemming from a May incident involving a Muslim couple who claim he yelled at them and made threatening hand gestures. (KPTV)
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

A Portland man charged with intimidation against a Muslim couple pleaded not guilty in court Monday.

Frederick "Rick" Sorrell told FOX 12 outside the courtroom that he did some of the things he's accused of, including telling the woman to take off her burqa and telling the couple to go back to their own country.

The incident happened in may near Northeast 102nd Avenue and Northeast Glisan Street. Sorrell was driving down the road at the same time as the couple when they said he began yelling and making hand gestures at them.

Outside for the courtroom Monday, Sorrell denied the couple’s claims of making the threatening gestures but did admit that he yelled, saying he did it out of fear.

“I’ve never seen a burqa before here in Portland… I've seen the hijabs colorful and I smile at them, I think they are very colorful,” he said. “I don't hate Muslims, I don’t have anything against Muslims. I am just scared when I saw (it) like if I saw someone from the KKK.”

The district attorney's office also claimed Sorrell has written threatening posts on social media and has anger issues. He challenged that notion, saying he is a conservative, not a racist, adding that he's been the victim of threatening posts as well.

“I guess my fear and paranoia just… I yelled out,” he said. “I don't go on social media looking to hate on people. I guess I'm just a patriot.”

In court Monday, Sorrell was ordered not to use Facebook. He said he would like to apologize to the couple but was ordered not to have any contact with them.

Sorrell will be back in court later this summer to face the three charges of second-degree intimidation stemming from the incident.

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