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BOSTON (AP) — Three New Hampshire teenagers who police say assaulted and yelled racial slurs at a popular street performer in Boston who plays music while dressed as a bear could face hate crime charges.

The three boys appeared in court Monday on charges of assault and battery and disorderly conduct. A judge ordered them released to their parents’ custody.

Police say “Keytar Bear” was attacked Saturday near Faneuil (FAN’-yul) Hall. They say the juveniles ripped off his mask and hit him several times while yelling racial slurs at him.

A witness told police one of the suspects slammed the musician’s face into the ground and vandalized his equipment before taking off with his tips.

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The Suffolk County District Attorney’s office says the assault is being investigated for potential civil rights violations.