FREMONT, Calif. — A Northern California man has been charged with a hate crime in connection with a religiously charged rant at a Taco Bell, the Fremont Police Department said this week.
Singh Tejinder, 37, of Union City, was filmed shouting at another man at a Taco Bell in Fremont on Aug. 21, according to police.
The victim, Krishnan Jayaraman, told Nexstar’s KRON that the suspect’s offensive rant lasted more than eight minutes.
“He again said, ‘Hey, pick up your bean burrito and leave. You’re a vegetarian right? You don’t eat beef. You should eat beef. You Indians should eat beef,’” Jayaraman told KRON.
Jayaraman also said the suspect spat on him and called Hindus “disgusting.”
Police responded to the location of the incident after a Taco Bell employee called to report a disturbance between two customers. Officers arrived to find the men in an “active argument,” the Fremont Police Department wrote on Facebook.
Police interviewed both men involved and “confirmed that a disparaging comment about a particular religion was stated during the verbal argument,” FPD said. Tejinder was not arrested, as there was not yet enough evidence to confirm a hate crime, according to the department.
After reviewing the video, the police again interviewed Jayaraman. The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office ultimately charged Tejinder with assault, disturbing the peace by offensive language, and a hate crime in violation of civil rights.
Tejinder was not in custody in Alameda County as of Monday night, police said. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call 510-790-6803.
Jayaraman also said there should be no tolerance for such hateful acts.
“We have grown numb to these kinds of things,” Jayaraman told KRON. “We need to be sensitive to a fellow human being.”