WARREN, Mich. (AP) — A white man accused of firing shots into the home of a Black suburban Detroit family who put a Black Lives Matter sign in their front window asked for forgiveness during a court hearing Thursday.
Michael Frederick Jr., 24, made the remarks after being given a moment to speak about his bond amount. He was appearing by video in Warren District Court for arraignment on charges including ethnic intimidation.
Frederick told Judge Michael Chupa that he wanted Eddie and Candace Hall to forgive him, though he didn’t specify what he did to make him seek their forgiveness.
“I’m extremely regretful of what I did. I can say it’s not like me,” Frederick said. “I acted way out of character. This wasn’t about the color of anyone’s skin.”
Chupa told Frederick several times not to discuss the case and said he was concerned if the allegations turn out to be true.
“People should be able to reasonably disagree about politics without it resorting to violence,” Chupa said. “Using violence, whether motivated by race or politics or hatred or acrimony — I don’t care, that is not what America is about.”
The judge entered not guilty pleas on behalf of Frederick for each count and set his bond at $200,000. Frederick requested a court-appointed lawyer.
A court conference was set for Oct. 13 and Frederick’s preliminary examination is scheduled for Oct. 20.
On Sept. 7, shots were fired at the Halls’ home in Warren. Two days later, someone painted a swastika on one of their vehicles, slashed the tires and threw a large stone through their front window. Outside, they discovered the swastika and found that someone had written “terrorist Black Lives Matter,” “not welcome” and a phrase containing an expletive on their pickup truck.
The following day, someone fired a bullet through the Halls’ front window and police found six shell casings outside the house.
A neighbor’s home surveillance video showed a masked and hooded man carrying what appears to be a handgun outside the Halls’ home. Frederick, who lives in the Halls’ neighborhood, was arrested Tuesday and confessed, Warren Police Commissioner Bill Dwyer told reporters.