Pottawatomie County District Attorney Allan Grubb on Monday announced formal charges for two suspects in what he called a “vicious, racist attack” in Shawnee, and also released a video showing one suspect punching himself in the face while in a police interview room.
Brandon Wayne Killian, 28, of Nichols Hills, and Devan Nathaniel Johnson, 24, Harrah, are formally charged in connection with a June 22 assault in the parking lot of a downtown Shawnee bar.
Both face a charge of felony aggravated assault and battery and are accused of assaulting Jarric DeShawn Carolina, 36, by “jumping and beating him to the point of being unconscious, with such force and violence and did thereby inflict bodily injury,” the charge reads.
Both defendants are charged with felony conspiracy as well as a misdemeanor count of malicious intimidation or harassment (race). That hate crime charge alleges they shouted at Carolina with intent to intimidate and harass Carolina because of his race.
In addition, Killian, who was captured on video hitting himself before officers took photos of his injuries in a police interview room, also faces a felony of preparing false evidence. That charge alleges he intentionally altered his appearance by punching himself in the face repeatedly to appear he was injured, the filing reads.
Grubb announced the charges on the steps of the Pottawatomie County courthouse with Carolina and his family present, as well as their family attorney, Edward C. Maguire, where Grubb said Killian and Johnson “savagely” beat Carolina.
“The victim is alive today because of the swift actions of the Shawnee Police Department,” Grubb said, as officers provided assistance to the injured victim and quickly arrested the suspects. Grubb said Detective Beau Bohuslavicky followed through with a thorough and effective investigation. Grubb said he and Carolina's family express their thanks to the Shawnee Police Department.
“As a community, we will not tolerate racist behavior such as occurred here,” Grubb said. “We stand united that this type of behavior be met with the full force of the law.”
In addition, Grubb said the charges filed include violations of Oklahoma's hate crime statute, which he said is “woefully inadequate,” with his office pledging to work diligently to help change that law.
In a letter to legislators, Grubb asks them to review state laws to strengthen Oklahoma's “hate crime” statute and allow district attorneys discretion to charge crimes like this case as a felony.
Also on Monday, Grubb released video showing Killian in a police interview room. When the detective asked if he was injured, Killian said the side of his face was hurt where he was first “socked.” While the officer was gone briefly to get a camera for pictures, the suspect began punching himself in the face, with that video showing at least 20 punches by his own hand to his cheek.
“It shows him striking himself repeatedly in an attempt to create the defense that he had been injured in the encounter and was engaged in self-defense,” Grubb said. “Lying to police and creating a false story will not be tolerated and Mr. Killian has been charged accordingly.”
Grubb, who said law enforcement resources of time are limited, said they will not waste taxpayer dollars investigating false claims.
Carolina, who is still recovering from his injuries, was there with his family as Grubb announced the charges, but because he is still recovering, Maguire spoke on the family's behalf.
Maguire said he has entered a formal appearance as a victim's advocate in this case and agrees the hate crime statute in Oklahoma is inadequate. He said they are looking at other possibilities in the case, including federal charges.
The incident occurred in the parking lot outside of BrickHouse Saloon in downtown Shawnee about 2 a.m. Saturday, June 22.
Johnson and Killian were both arrested during a traffic stop shortly after the incident and booked into the Pottawatomie County Public Safety Center.
Johnson has since been released on bond, while Killian is now jailed in the Oklahoma County jail, where he is being held on charges in an unrelated drug court case in that county.
The next court dates for Johnson and Killian have not yet been scheduled and there are no attorneys of record yet listed on their case files.
Watch for updates.