PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - A 38-year-old man will participate in restorative justice with the Oregon Chinese Coalition as part of a plea agreement in a bias crime case, according to the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office.
Daniel Hutchens pleaded guilty to second-degree bias crime. He was placed on three years of formal probation, and will be required to undergo drug, alcohol and mental health evaluation and complete any recommended treatment.
While on probation, Hutchens will not be able to have contact with the victim or possess knives or other weapons, according to the district attorney's office.
The district attorney's office said the victim in the case supported the resolution and asked the state to seek a resolution that did not include additional jail time.
"This is an important resolution. Daniel Hutchens is now taking responsibility for his inexcusable actions that were rooted in hate. But he’s also demonstrating that he is willing to make amends to our community and specifically the Asian American community and to approach his rehabilitation seriously," District Attorney Mike Schmidt said. "We sincerely appreciate and respect the victim’s wishes to find an alternative sentence to this case that doesn’t involve more jail time. The recent increase in hatred, intolerance and bigotry against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders is appalling. Our office stands with our AAPI community members and we support them fully."
The court imposed 90 days of jail with credit for time already served. The district attorney's office said Hutchens had already spent more than 100 days in custody.
The district attorney's office said the investigation began in Dec. 2020 when Hutchens approached the victim at a transit stop and asked the victim, "are you Chinese?" He then punched the victim in the face.
By pleading guilty, the district attorney's office said Hutchens admitted to "intentionally and knowingly causing physical injury to the victim because of his perception of the victim’s national origin."
The restorative justice will be facilitated by the Oregon Chinese Coalition, which released the following statement:
"As Portland and America suffer from elevated rates of racial prejudice, it is of the utmost importance to call out, address, and mitigate the hate crimes that have directly harmed our communities. Cases involving anti-Asian hate such as Mr. Hutchens's act of criminality reflect growing trends of America's racial biases plaguing this nation. By holding the defendant accountable for his reprehensible actions, the DA’s Office is taking a righteous step to address anti-Asian injustice. Racially motivated violence will not be tolerated at any time, but education through accountability is one of the first steps we, as a city, can take towards resolving these injustices."