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Tinley Park Man Accused of a Hate Crime against Bank Worker

September 14th, 2012 at 5:24 pm

On September 2nd, a representative of a bank visited a foreclosed home near the 6200 block of West 179th Street of Tinley Park.  This man was working on the outside the home when he was verbally abused from a neighboring home.  His name was not released but he is a 51 year old African American man.  The resulting altercation caused a Tinley Park man to be charged with a felony hate crime.

The neighbor accused of slinging racial slurs at this man is 47 year old Joseph Berndt, who resides at 17903 S. Highland Avenue.  He also yelled at this man and accused him of breaking into the foreclosed property next door.  Unfortunately, when this agent tried to explain his professional capacity to Berndt, he was answered by a beer can and a brick as well as racial slurs and insults.

Berndt went on the property to chase this worker away when the projectiles didn’t scare him off.  He was brandishing a lead pipe and swinging to allegedly harm this poor man.  As this man was fleeing, he ended up tripping onto the ground.  At this time Berndt is accused of choking this man while threatening to kill him.  Luckily, the man was able to escape Berndt’s grasp and call the police.

Berndt has said that he was under the impression that his neighbor’s house was being burglarized in an attempt to excuse his wild behavior.  While he has been accused of a felony hate crime, no more is known of his guilt or innocence.  If you have been accused of any sort of felony crime, count on a lawyer who can get you a favorable outcome in your dire situation, contact an experienced felony defense attorney in Cook County today.

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