WASHINGTON — A 29-year-old white man from Texas who filmed himself committing a knockout game assault an elderly black man was sentenced to nearly six years in federal prison on Friday.
Conrad Alvin Barrett was 27 when he attacked a 79-year-old black man in 2013, breaking his jaw. Barrett was charged with a hate crime that December, and in 2014 tried to challenge the constitutionality of the hate crimes law under which he was sentenced. He pleaded guilty over the summer, and on Friday, a federal judge sentenced Barrett to 71 months in prison.
Barrett shot 11 videos on his cell phone, which his lawyer wrote in a court filing showed “nonsensical racist rants, discussion about ‘the knockout game’ itself” and “a great deal of racist remarks, slurs, and stereotypes, and they are highly inflammatory.” In one of the videos, Barrett said that African-Americans “haven’t fully experienced the blessing of evolution.”
The defense lawyer said Barrett had bipolar disorder and was intoxicated on prescription drugs and alcohol at the time of the attack.
“The defendant committed this shocking and violent assault against this vulnerable elderly man simply because he was African American,” Vanita Gupta, the head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, said in a statement. “The Department of Justice will continue to work tirelessly to ensure that the rights of victims of violent crimes are vindicated.”