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2 charged following incident at Richmond coffee shop allegedly involving racial slurs

Vancouver -

Two suspects have been charged in connection with an ugly incident at a Richmond, B.C., coffee shop earlier this year that allegedly involved racial slurs.

The RCMP said officers were called to Rocanini Coffee Roasters in the city's Steveston neighbourhood after the manager reported an alleged assault on March 29.

Staff said two customers came in, ignored COVID-19 protocols and then became agitated after being asked to move tables. Surveillance video captured drinks being poured on the floor and an object being thrown as a couple was leaving the coffee shop.

Authorities were told racial slurs were uttered during the incident as well.

"Hate has no place in our community," Insp. Michael Cohee of the Richmond RCMP said in a news release Thursday. "We are committed to investigating every incident to its fullest and will pursue charges where a potential offence has been committed."

Astrid Maria Secreve and Michel Jean-Jacque Berthiaume are each charged with one count of mischief, authorities said.

They are scheduled to appear in Richmond provincial court on June 23.

Richmond RCMP initially recommended a mischief charge against one suspect at the beginning of May, prompting outcry from the Stop Anti-Asian Hate Crimes advocacy group.

The group launched an online petition calling for additional charges of inciting hatred and assault in connection with the incident. As of Thursday afternoon, the petition had been signed more than 6,300 times. Top Stories

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