A judge sentenced the Florida man who spray-painted multiple slurs against Asians on a family’s cars in New Smyrna Beach to one year in jail Tuesday, Click Orlando reports.
Police say 34-year-old Kyle Christiansen spray-painted the slurs on cars and left nails under car tires in July 2020. He was arrested in September 2020. On June 8, 2021, a jury convicted Christiansen of two counts of criminal mischief with hate crime enhancements, Daytona Beach Journal reports.
At Tuesday’s sentencing hearing Circuit Judge Dennis Craig sentenced him to one year in jail, three years of house arrest and seven years of probation. He called Christiansen’s actions an “act of terror.”
“You have effectively terrorized a family is what you did,” Craig told Christiansen, according to Daytona Beach Journal. “Probably without even taking that into consideration, you just needed to act out on your hatred and on your prejudice.”
Court records suggested that Christiansen struggled with his mental health, but Craig said he did not believe his mental health played an influenced his actions.
“I think it’s evident from the facts it’s the prejudice why you took these actions, not the mental health issue,” Craig said, according to Daytona Beach Journal. “As far as the mental health issue goes, I don’t have anything to indicate that the mental health issues that you have would be the cause of such hate and acting out on such hate on people that you don’t even know.”
The husband and wife who owned the car Christiansen vandalized are concerned about his eventual release.
“What happens when he is out?” the husband testified according to Daytona Beach Journal. “What’s going to stop him from going further? That is my biggest fear.”
At the hearing, Christiansen said he was sorry. He said being jailed was a “frightening experience” he did not wish to return to. He wants to continue pursuing his bachelor’s degree and to continue his job serving healthy food.
“I swear,” Christiansen told the judge. “I promise. I will never do anything like that ever again. I promise.”
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