In today’s episode of Play Stupid Games, Win Stupid Hate Crime Charges, a Paradise, Calif., woman is facing hate crime charges after she allegedly plowed through a work zone in her SUV while drinking and shouting racial slurs at a Black worker who was holding up signs to control the pace of traffic. The worker said he actually had to jump out of the way to avoid being hit by the vehicle when it passed through the work zone a second time.
Listen: We all get annoyed when roadside construction slows traffic down, but most of us don’t feel the need to go full drunken Nazi Karen over being asked to slow the hell down.
Action News Now reports that 33-year-old Martina Marie Garcia is “alleged to have driven her Ford Explorer SUV north through a traffic-controlled work zone in the 5500 block of Scottwood Road in Paradise at approximately 40-50 miles per hour while workers were present trying to clear trees” in an area that has a speed limit of 25 mph, according to Butte County District Attorney Michael Ramsey.
Ramsey said Saturday that in addition to DUI and assault charges, Garcia is facing hate crime charges because she made “racially derogatory slurs as she drove her vehicle toward an African American traffic flagger.” The alleged incident happened on March 30, but the hate crime enhancement was added later after “police reports came in and it appeared the assault was motivated by hate directed at a minority,” Ramsey said.
Here’s what happened as reported by Action News:
Ramsey said the traffic control flagger was holding a “slow” sign as Garcia sped through the work zone “with a beer to her mouth” while “making an obscene gesture.” Ramsey said other workers saw a passenger in the front seat making a similar gesture. That man, said Ramsey, was later identified as Garcia’s brother.
The District Attorney explained that workers have claimed that Garcia returned a few minutes later driving the other direction in the same vehicle. He said this time the flagger was holding a “stop” sign.
Ramsey said the flagger had to jump out of the way to avoid being struck by Garcia as workers claim she accelerated to 50-60 mph and swerved her vehicle at the flagger, all while yelling racial epithets at him.
The D.A. said another member of the work crew called 9-1-1 and then followed Garcia to her home. He said Paradise police arrived and arrested Garcia for driving under the influence and assault.
Ramsey said Garcia’s brother, 43-year-old Antonia Burgos, was arrested for being drunk in public and for violating his parole, which involved alcohol use.
Drinking and driving? Racial slurs? Speeding through streets with complete disregard for pedestrians and road workers? Clearly, someone has been playing too much Grand Theft Auto online.
Seriously, imagine being so dedicated to your bigotry that passing through the work zone while doing your best drunken-Mario-Andretti-meets-the-Klan impersonation once wasn’t enough, so you felt the need to cruise back through the zone a second time for a racist AF encore.
Shoutout to whichever worker was like “fuck this,” and decided to follow Great Value Bonnie and Clyde home and make sure they didn’t just get away with endangering people’s lives while being bigoted assholes.
According to Action News, Garcia was arraigned in Butte County Superior Court last Friday and was released on $55,000 bail. The hate crime enhancement would add another three years to the potential four years in prison she was already facing.