Prosecutors have charged a New Jersey man with federal hate crimes after he allegedly brutally assaulted four Orthodox Jewish men and hit three of them with a car in a violent one-day spree.
Dion Marsh, 27, of Manchester, was charged with four counts of having violated the federal Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act and one count of carjacking, according to Philip R. Sellinger, the United States Attorney for the District of New Jersey, in a news release issued Wednesday.
If Marsh is convicted, he could spend the rest of his life in prison.
Marsh is accused of targeting his victims “because they were Jewish,” according to a news release from prosecutors.
An Orthodox Jewish man was forced out of his car in Lakewood at 1:18 p.m. on April 8 by Marsh, and he allegedly assaulted him in the process. Then, they said, he took the victim’s car and drove off.
When he was driving a different car, “when he deliberately struck another visibly identifiable Orthodox Jewish man” with the vehicle, “prosecutors said. He “tried to kill the victim and ended up breaking several bones.”
Police say Marsh tried to kill another Orthodox Jewish man by hitting him with his own car while he was walking in Lakewood at 6:55pm on Friday. Afterward, Marsh got out of the car and stabbed the man in the chest with a knife.
Another Orthodox Jewish man walking in Jackson Township was hit by Marsh’s car just before 8:30 p.m. Marsh was in the same car as the first victim at the time. The man had a lot of broken bones and internal injuries.
On April 9, Marsh was arrested in his home at 12 a.m.
In the case of hate crimes, he was charged with willfully hurting four people and attempting to kill and hurt three of them with a dangerous weapon because they were Jewish.
An attempted murder charge can get you up to life in prison, and an assault charge can get you up to 10 years in prison and $250,000 in fines. The maximum sentence for carjacking is 15 years, and the $250,000 fine is also part of that charge.
Marsh was in custody for state crimes. Prosecutors say they don’t know when his first court date on federal charges will be.