A man has been arrested in the case of a bias-motivated crime, otherwise known as a hate crime, that occurred July 23 at a Rocket Gas Station in Aurora, the Aurora Police Department announced Aug. 25 …
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A man has been arrested in the case of a bias-motivated crime, otherwise known as a hate crime, that occurred July 23 at a Rocket Gas Station in Aurora, the Aurora Police Department announced Aug. 25 on Facebook.
The suspect is Rimy Reko Kosam, who was arrested on Aug. 24 at around 4:30 p.m. by the Direct Action Response Team, according to the police department. The arrest comes after a lengthy investigation conducted by the Aurora Police Department’s bias-motivated crime investigator.
The Aurora Police Department had asked for help identifying the suspect earlier this month. In an Aug. 2 Facebook post, the police department said on July 23 at about 11 p.m., a man entered the store at the Rocket Gas Station located at 1100 S. Havana St. and allegedly confronted two other customers who were speaking Spanish.
He allegedly told the customers “they don’t belong here” and then followed them to their car, according to police.
The suspect then allegedly pulled out a gas nozzle and sprayed the victims with gasoline, said Sgt. Faith Goodrich, a public information officer for the police department, in an Aug. 2 interview.
He then allegedly “looked for a lighter to try and light them on fire” but could not find one, or did not have one, and then threw a rock through the rear window of the victim’s vehicle and stole the keys to the vehicle, Goodrich said.
Goodrich said the two victims suffered minor, not life-threatening injuries from the assault and confirmed the victims were not set aflame. The victim’s vehicle was not stolen, just the keys to the vehicle, Goodrich said.
Kosam is facing several charges including robbery, third-degree assault, second-degree criminal trespass, criminal mischief, harassment and several bias-motivated crimes, according to police.
To report a bias-motivated crime, residents can call (303) 627-1661 or email StopHate@auroragov.org.
“Those are ways that anyone can report any bias-motivated crime, and they can do so anonymously if they’re uncomfortable reporting to an officer in uniform,” Goodrich said.
These contact lines were set up in September 2020, Goodrich said. She said the police department has made efforts to educate officers about what a bias-motivated crime is and to encourage the public to report these types of crimes.
The department also has dedicated one detective to work on these cases full-time, according to its website.
Those interested in learning more about how the Aurora Police Department handles bias-motivated crimes can visit: bit.ly/AuroraPoliceDepartment.
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