Police: Man with gun told victim to apologize to black people

A man has been charged with malicious harassment and second-degree assault after he pointed a gun at a man in Seattle's Green Lake neighborhood and demanded that he apologize "for all the things white people did to black people," according to prosecutors.

Chikwanha E. Nyashanu, 35, was ordered held on $100,000 bail Tuesday after King County District Court Judge Arthur R. Chapman called his actions "inexplicable" and deemed him a danger to the community.

"There appears to be no reason for this kind of behavior," he said.

On Thursday, prosecutors will seek to have the bail amount increased to $500,000 based on information that Nyashanu may have threatened as many as three other people with a gun near the Green Lake Community Center on Sunday.

According to court documents, officers were called to 7201 E. Green Lake Dr. around 9:14 p.m. on the report that an unknown male had threatened someone with a handgun.

"Responding officers located a possible suspect in the area and ordered him to the ground," the documents read. "The suspect failed to follow the order. The suspect was tased."

The victim was able to identify the man in custody as the "same person who had just pointed a handgun at him for 15-20 seconds and demanded he apologize for all the things white people did to black people."

In court documents, the victim is described as a white male and the suspect was described by witnesses as a black male.

The victim told the officers he was "scared out of his mind" and "apologized profusely" to the suspect.

According to the documents, the handgun was loaded and police recovered "multiple rounds of ammunition" from Nyashanu's backpack.

During a court hearing on Tuesday, a woman who identified herself as Nyashanu's mother told a judge that her son "has never exhibited any aggressive behavior toward others."

"I am just pretty astounded that this is happening," said the woman, who was white.

According to court records, Nyashanu has a weapons-related conviction from 2002 as well as a conviction for obstruction of justice in 2006 and reckless endangerment in 2009.


Brandi Kruse, KIRO Radio Reporter
Brandi Kruse is a reporter for KIRO Radio who is as spontaneous and adventurous in her free time as she is on the job. Brandi arrived at KIRO Radio in March 2011 and has already collected three regional Edward R. Murrow awards for her reporting.
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