A 72-year-old Shoreline woman accused of threatening her Vietnamese American neighbor was arrested and charged with a hate crime Thursday, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.
The allegations come amid an increase in anti-Asian bias reported locally and nationally. This was the 11th hate-crime case filed by King County prosecutors so far this year, with four of those involving victims identified as Asian American and/or Pacific Islanders, prosecutors said.
The neighbor of Jan Myers said Myers had acted erratically and yelled racial slurs at her for years. On April 5, “these anti-Asian racial slurs escalated to threatening behavior,” according to prosecutors’ summary of the case. Myers is white, prosecutors said.
While the neighbor was gardening, Myers referred to her as “slant eye,” and yelled “Hey Miss Vietnam … You’re not going to live very long,” according to the charges. The neighbor recorded video that documented the confrontation, police said.
Court records do not yet indicate which attorney is representing Myers.
Myers had previously complained that the neighbors’ cat had defecated on her lawn, police said. In an interview with Shoreline deputies, she denied making threats or calling the neighbor “Miss Vietnam.” Police said the statements “were inconsistent with what the video showed.”
Myers was released on her own recognizance after an initial court hearing. She is scheduled to attend an arraignment April 22.