New York mother Natia Shim is ready to pack up her family and move after being harassed and threatened on a state road.
"They tried to run us off the road saying, 'You n*****, get the f*** out of our country,' and we were, like, distraught because we didn't know exactly what was going on," Shim recounted.
Last Thursday, Shim and her 17-year-old son were traveling to Latham Farms to fill out job applications for the teen who will soon be graduating high school. Out of nowhere, she claimed, a green truck with lights on top of it rammed her off the road and into the shoulder.
She said her son was terrified. “All he kept saying was, 'Mommy, they're going to kill us, they're going to kill us,' and I'm just sitting there like, 'Just go,' and I'm ducking down in the seat,” she said.
The truck cut them off at the Latham exit ramp, and at least three men and two women got out of the vehicle and proceeded to vandalize Shim’s SUV using bats and a frying pan while yelling racial epithets at them.
"They're screaming, 'We are the white supremacists,' and n*****s do not belong in their country," Shim recalled.
She and her son were able to remain safe as she called 911. New York State Police are handling the investigation since it occurred on a state road. Shim said while she was being interviewed about the incident at the police office, seven witnesses had called in to corroborate her account of the story.
Additionally, the people who committed the atrocious act admitted to it, claiming they attacked the mother and son in a case of mistaken identity.
"The people that did it said, 'Oh, we thought that her vehicle was the vehicle who robbed my son for a radio a day prior in Watervliet,'" Shim said.
Shim maintained that neither she nor her son had anything to do with the theft of any radio, and she said she wants her attackers arrested.
These vigilante neo-Nazis caused at least $3,000 worth of damage to Shim’s car. What’s worse, though, is that now Shim said she feels unsafe in her home and neighborhood. She suggested that the attackers had been following her and know where she lives as the same vehicle they were in drove past her home on Sunday.
"They took it in their own hands and chased down the wrong car from Troy to Latham to kill me and my son. How are we supposed to feel safe?" she asked rhetorically.
Even if the stolen radio story had any inkling of truth in it, this group's actions went far beyond retaliation. They committed a hate crime.
The use of racial slurs, proclaiming to be white supremacists, and telling Shim and her son they don't belong in America indicate that they weren't just trying to get payback over a stolen radio. They were clearly delivering a racially-charged attack stemming from deeply-rooted hatred.
It's fairly safe to assume that if Shim and her son were white, their encounter with the assailants would have gone differently because race wouldn't have come into play.
The bottom line is that they egregiously took the law into their own hands only to track down the wrong people, and they need to be held accountable for that.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons, MPD01605