Man charged with hate crime for allegedly beating Indian motel owner

iStock(REDMOND, Ore.) -- An Oregon man has been charged with attempted murder and hate crimes for allegedly attacking an Indian immigrant due to her ethnicity, leaving her with a broken shoulder and various other injuries.

James Lamb, 53, was charged with attempted murder, two counts of a bias crime, assault, burglary, strangulation, menacing and criminal mischief, for allegedly breaking into the motel office where 70-year-old Meena Puri worked and beating her severely, prosecutors said Tuesday.

Lamb was staying at the Hub Motel in Redmond, co-owned by Puri and her husband, when he allegedly attacked her on New Year's Eve, leaving her with injuries to her throat, a broken shoulder and a black eye, prosecutors said.

He was indicted on hate crime charges early this week in light of comments he made about Puri's nationality. He allegedly made derogatory statements regarding the woman's country of origin and expressed a desire to rid America of people like her, according to the Deschutes County District Attorney’s Office.

"The victim of this unprovoked assault provided heroic testimony to the grand jury from her hospital bed. Too many people in Oregon are silenced by intimidation and violence because of how they look, who they love, or to whom they pray," Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel said in a statement.

He said the charges were made possible by a recently revised bias crime law in the state that allows a felony hate crime to be charged even if a defendant acts alone.

Previously, felony charges were only authorized if two or more people harmed another based on these motivations.

"Because of this woman's strength, and because the Oregon Legislature passed a law last year to strengthen Oregon’s hate crime law, justice will be delivered in this case," Hummel said. "Hate is not tolerated in Deschutes County."

Lamb, who was seen smiling in his booking photo, is scheduled to appear in court on Friday. It's unclear if he has retained an attorney.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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Man dies after being zipped into suitcase, girlfriend arrested

Man dies after being zipped into suitcase, girlfriend arrestedOrange County Sheriff's Office(WINTER PARK, Fla.) -- A woman in Florida has been arrested in the death of her boyfriend after she allegedly zipped him into a suitcase and left him there for hours, authorities said.

Sarah Boone, 42, called authorities Monday afternoon to report that her boyfriend, 42-year-old Jorge Torres Jr., was dead at her Winter Park home, according to the arrest affidavit. Boone said they were playing hide-and-seek when the couple "jokingly thought it would be funny if Jorge got in the suitcase," and Boone zipped him inside.

Boone said they had been drinking alcohol that night, the affidavit said. She said she then "went upstairs and passed out in her bed."

Boone said she woke up around 11 a.m. when her phone rang multiple times, the affidavit said.

When Boone went downstairs and didn't see her boyfriend anywhere, she "realized that he was possibly still inside the suitcase," the affidavit said. Boone unzipped the suitcase and found Torres unresponsive and not breathing.

When deputies responded to her 911 call, Torres was found lying by the front door near a blue suitcase, the affidavit said. He had a small laceration on his lip and apparent bruising around his eye. Torres was declared dead around 1 p.m.

As authorities investigated, they recovered video from Boone's phone in which Torres was repeatedly yelling out Boone's name, the affidavit said.

Torres was seen on the video pushing on the suitcase, trying to escape, according to the affidavit.

In the video, according to the affidavit, Boone said to Torres, "For everything you've done to me," then laughed and said, "F--- you. Stupid."

Torres repeatedly called out his girlfriend's name, and told her, 'I can't f------ breathe, seriously," the video showed, according to the affidavit. When Torres repeatedly told Boone he couldn't breathe, Boone replied, "That's what I feel like when you cheat on me ... You should probably shut the f--- up."

Arrested: Sarah Boone, 42, for Second Degree Murder in the death of 42-year-old Jorge Torres Jr., who died after Boone zipped him into a suitcase, and didn’t return for hours. pic.twitter.com/JCHWG7WNkp

— Orange County Sheriff's Office (@OrangeCoSheriff) February 26, 2020

Bonne was booked on Wednesday for second-degree murder. She does not yet have an attorney or a court date.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Man charged with hate crime for allegedly beating Indian motel owner

iStock(REDMOND, Ore.) -- An Oregon man has been charged with attempted murder and hate crimes for allegedly attacking an Indian immigrant due to her ethnicity, leaving her with a broken shoulder and various other injuries.

James Lamb, 53, was charged with attempted murder, two counts of a bias crime, assault, burglary, strangulation, menacing and criminal mischief, for allegedly breaking into the motel office where 70-year-old Meena Puri worked and beating her severely, prosecutors said Tuesday.

Lamb was staying at the Hub Motel in Redmond, co-owned by Puri and her husband, when he allegedly attacked her on New Year's Eve, leaving her with injuries to her throat, a broken shoulder and a black eye, prosecutors said.

He was indicted on hate crime charges early this week in light of comments he made about Puri's nationality. He allegedly made derogatory statements regarding the woman's country of origin and expressed a desire to rid America of people like her, according to the Deschutes County District Attorney’s Office.

"The victim of this unprovoked assault provided heroic testimony to the grand jury from her hospital bed. Too many people in Oregon are silenced by intimidation and violence because of how they look, who they love, or to whom they pray," Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel said in a statement.

He said the charges were made possible by a recently revised bias crime law in the state that allows a felony hate crime to be charged even if a defendant acts alone.

Previously, felony charges were only authorized if two or more people harmed another based on these motivations.

"Because of this woman's strength, and because the Oregon Legislature passed a law last year to strengthen Oregon’s hate crime law, justice will be delivered in this case," Hummel said. "Hate is not tolerated in Deschutes County."

Lamb, who was seen smiling in his booking photo, is scheduled to appear in court on Friday. It's unclear if he has retained an attorney.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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Man dies after being zipped into suitcase, girlfriend arrested

Man dies after being zipped into suitcase, girlfriend arrestedOrange County Sheriff's Office(WINTER PARK, Fla.) -- A woman in Florida has been arrested in the death of her boyfriend after she allegedly zipped him into a suitcase and left him there for hours, authorities said.

Sarah Boone, 42, called authorities Monday afternoon to report that her boyfriend, 42-year-old Jorge Torres Jr., was dead at her Winter Park home, according to the arrest affidavit. Boone said they were playing hide-and-seek when the couple "jokingly thought it would be funny if Jorge got in the suitcase," and Boone zipped him inside.

Boone said they had been drinking alcohol that night, the affidavit said. She said she then "went upstairs and passed out in her bed."

Boone said she woke up around 11 a.m. when her phone rang multiple times, the affidavit said.

When Boone went downstairs and didn't see her boyfriend anywhere, she "realized that he was possibly still inside the suitcase," the affidavit said. Boone unzipped the suitcase and found Torres unresponsive and not breathing.

When deputies responded to her 911 call, Torres was found lying by the front door near a blue suitcase, the affidavit said. He had a small laceration on his lip and apparent bruising around his eye. Torres was declared dead around 1 p.m.

As authorities investigated, they recovered video from Boone's phone in which Torres was repeatedly yelling out Boone's name, the affidavit said.

Torres was seen on the video pushing on the suitcase, trying to escape, according to the affidavit.

In the video, according to the affidavit, Boone said to Torres, "For everything you've done to me," then laughed and said, "F--- you. Stupid."

Torres repeatedly called out his girlfriend's name, and told her, 'I can't f------ breathe, seriously," the video showed, according to the affidavit. When Torres repeatedly told Boone he couldn't breathe, Boone replied, "That's what I feel like when you cheat on me ... You should probably shut the f--- up."

Arrested: Sarah Boone, 42, for Second Degree Murder in the death of 42-year-old Jorge Torres Jr., who died after Boone zipped him into a suitcase, and didn’t return for hours. pic.twitter.com/JCHWG7WNkp

— Orange County Sheriff's Office (@OrangeCoSheriff) February 26, 2020

Bonne was booked on Wednesday for second-degree murder. She does not yet have an attorney or a court date.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Man charged with hate crime for allegedly beating Indian motel owner

iStock(REDMOND, Ore.) -- An Oregon man has been charged with attempted murder and hate crimes for allegedly attacking an Indian immigrant due to her ethnicity, leaving her with a broken shoulder and various other injuries.

James Lamb, 53, was charged with attempted murder, two counts of a bias crime, assault, burglary, strangulation, menacing and criminal mischief, for allegedly breaking into the motel office where 70-year-old Meena Puri worked and beating her severely, prosecutors said Tuesday.

Lamb was staying at the Hub Motel in Redmond, co-owned by Puri and her husband, when he allegedly attacked her on New Year's Eve, leaving her with injuries to her throat, a broken shoulder and a black eye, prosecutors said.

He was indicted on hate crime charges early this week in light of comments he made about Puri's nationality. He allegedly made derogatory statements regarding the woman's country of origin and expressed a desire to rid America of people like her, according to the Deschutes County District Attorney’s Office.

"The victim of this unprovoked assault provided heroic testimony to the grand jury from her hospital bed. Too many people in Oregon are silenced by intimidation and violence because of how they look, who they love, or to whom they pray," Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel said in a statement.

He said the charges were made possible by a recently revised bias crime law in the state that allows a felony hate crime to be charged even if a defendant acts alone.

Previously, felony charges were only authorized if two or more people harmed another based on these motivations.

"Because of this woman's strength, and because the Oregon Legislature passed a law last year to strengthen Oregon’s hate crime law, justice will be delivered in this case," Hummel said. "Hate is not tolerated in Deschutes County."

Lamb, who was seen smiling in his booking photo, is scheduled to appear in court on Friday. It's unclear if he has retained an attorney.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Check Also

Man dies after being zipped into suitcase, girlfriend arrested

Man dies after being zipped into suitcase, girlfriend arrestedOrange County Sheriff's Office(WINTER PARK, Fla.) -- A woman in Florida has been arrested in the death of her boyfriend after she allegedly zipped him into a suitcase and left him there for hours, authorities said.

Sarah Boone, 42, called authorities Monday afternoon to report that her boyfriend, 42-year-old Jorge Torres Jr., was dead at her Winter Park home, according to the arrest affidavit. Boone said they were playing hide-and-seek when the couple "jokingly thought it would be funny if Jorge got in the suitcase," and Boone zipped him inside.

Boone said they had been drinking alcohol that night, the affidavit said. She said she then "went upstairs and passed out in her bed."

Boone said she woke up around 11 a.m. when her phone rang multiple times, the affidavit said.

When Boone went downstairs and didn't see her boyfriend anywhere, she "realized that he was possibly still inside the suitcase," the affidavit said. Boone unzipped the suitcase and found Torres unresponsive and not breathing.

When deputies responded to her 911 call, Torres was found lying by the front door near a blue suitcase, the affidavit said. He had a small laceration on his lip and apparent bruising around his eye. Torres was declared dead around 1 p.m.

As authorities investigated, they recovered video from Boone's phone in which Torres was repeatedly yelling out Boone's name, the affidavit said.

Torres was seen on the video pushing on the suitcase, trying to escape, according to the affidavit.

In the video, according to the affidavit, Boone said to Torres, "For everything you've done to me," then laughed and said, "F--- you. Stupid."

Torres repeatedly called out his girlfriend's name, and told her, 'I can't f------ breathe, seriously," the video showed, according to the affidavit. When Torres repeatedly told Boone he couldn't breathe, Boone replied, "That's what I feel like when you cheat on me ... You should probably shut the f--- up."

Arrested: Sarah Boone, 42, for Second Degree Murder in the death of 42-year-old Jorge Torres Jr., who died after Boone zipped him into a suitcase, and didn’t return for hours. pic.twitter.com/JCHWG7WNkp

— Orange County Sheriff's Office (@OrangeCoSheriff) February 26, 2020

Bonne was booked on Wednesday for second-degree murder. She does not yet have an attorney or a court date.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.