GRAND ISLE, LA (WVUE) - A Grand Isle businessman admitted that he assaulted two female African-American Hurricane Isaac relief workers because of their race and because of their employment status.
Josh Jambon, 52, pleaded guilty Wednesday in front of U.S. District Judge Susie Morgan to two counts of federal civil rights violations.
On Sept. 18, 2012, in Grand Isle, Jambon approached a work crew tasked with cleaning up debris from Hurricane Isaac. During an interaction with the work crew, Jambon allegedly used racial slurs against two female African-American crew members. Court documents state Jambon then approached one victim and hit her in the face because of her race and because of her employment with the work crew. He then proceeded to assault the second victim in the same manner, officials say.
When Jambon saw a third crew member filming the incident on her cell phone, Jambon initiated a physical struggle with the woman in an attempt to take her cell phone so that he could delete the video, officials say.
"Hate-fueled violence has no place in a civilized society," said Acting Assistant Attorney General Jocelyn Samuels for the Civil Rights Division. "The Justice Department is committed to using all the tools in our law enforcement arsenal to prosecute acts motivated by racial bias."
"By holding Mr. Jambon accountable for his racially-motivated criminal conduct, our office once again demonstrates its commitment to protecting the civil rights of all residents in Southeast Louisiana," said U.S. Attorney Kenneth Allen Polite Jr. for the Eastern District of Louisiana.
For each count, Jambon faces a statutory maximum penalty of one year in prison, up to one year of supervised release, a $100,000 fine and a $25 special assessment.
The case is being investigated by special agents of the FBI.