June 21, 2013 9:18 PM
BERWYN (CBS) — An African American man claims he was the target of a racial attack, simply for driving his car down the street in a western suburb.
Joe Loggins says a brick was hurled at his vehicle as he drove on East Avenue in Berwyn on Monday.
He says it happened simply because he’s black, CBS 2′s Mike Puccinelli reports.
“There was a guy in the street and he throws up some gang signs at me and called me the ‘n’ word,” Loggins said
Loggins says he did nothing at all to provoke the man, who also asked him what he was doing in Berwyn.
Loggins said that prompted him to make a u-turn so he could confront the man.
But before he could even get out of his car, Loggins says the man flung the brick at his BMW.
It did more than $1,400 worth of damage before the offender took off running.
Loggins called police, who confirmed there was a racially motivated attack.
Loggins says police told him there had been a recent uptick in racial tension in the city.
Loggins says he fears that what happened to him is a symptom of a larger problem in the west suburban town.
Berywn Police police chief Jim Ritz said his department is taking the complaint seriously but believes it is an isolated incident.
“You see signs on Kennedy, ‘Say yes to Berwyn.’ I wouldn’t move to Berywn because of stuff like this,” said Loggins.
Police believe their investigation will ultimately show that it was one man’s unwelcome views and not a sign that Berwyn no longer welcomes minorities.
If the suspect is ever caught, he could face hate crime charges.