Man charged over racially-motivated assault on Metro State worker

The suspect allegedly carried out another assault on a Mexican store manager an hour earlier.
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Steven Parker

A man believed to have been behind a racially-motivated assault on a Metro State employee has been arrested and charged.

Steven Parker, 59, of no fixed address in St. Paul, was charged with simple robbery and third-degree assault for the incident on June 19.

He was picked up on Thursday in connection with an unrelated robbery, and has now been charged with two incidents on June 19, both of which carry racial undertones.

In the first incident, Parker began yelling at the store manager at a Walgreen's on Arcade Street, referencing the manager's Mexican heritage, before walking out carrying a video game and a bottle of detergent he hadn't paid for.

When the manager followed Parker outside, he charged at him, throwing both items at the manager.

He then returned with another man, later identified as Parker's 18-year-old son, Parker Steven Laframboise, and "both men punched and kicked the manager before running away on foot."

Just under an hour later, the 45-year-old Metro State employee was approached from behind by a man he later identified as Parker.

The employee was asked where he was from and why he was in this country. Parker then punched him in the side of the face, knocking off his glasses and an earbud.

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The victim suffered fractured orbital and maxillary sinus bones as a result.

A statement from Metro State read: "The university is committed to being a welcoming and safe environment for all.

"While we acknowledge that this arrest alone does not eradicate the possibility of future bias-related incidents, we do hope this brings a measure of relief to the university and surrounding community."

Parker's son has also been charged with simple robbery over the incident at Walgreen's.

Parker has three prior felony convictions for theft, receiving stolen property and second-degree assault.

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