Possible hate crime at Gaithersburg Giant

Photo by Marek Studzinski on Unsplash

A Washington, D.C., man is in police custody after attacking a man wearing a Star of David necklace inside a Giant grocery store on Flower Hill Way in Gaithersburg Wednesday, according to Montgomery County police. He faces robbery and possible hate crime charges.

Court documents state that the offender, Eugene Thompson, also known as Michael Stewart, and a group of men were throwing fruit at customers and stealing donuts. That was when the man wearing the Star of David necklace — which was not yet visible above his sweatshirt — allegedly approached them and asked them to stop. They taunted him and threw a lime at his head, per the police report.

At some point, the man unzipped his sweatshirt to reveal the necklace and faced antisemitic comments from Stewart. Stewart is also accused of beating the man until he was unconscious.

“While being punched, (the victim) stated that he heard members of the group shouting, ‘Yeah, do it for Kanye,'” charging documents say.


Police found Stewart at a McDonald’s across the street from the Giant. Authorities said the victim went to the hospital but will likely recover from his injuries.

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