An African American man was convicted of killing a woman who called him the "N-word." 27-year old Robert Coleman threw one punch, and that's all it took.
Fedelia Montiel-Benitez died in a hospital 10 days later, and Robert will now most likely go to prison for 10 years for second-degree murder.
Robert was found guilty at trial in Alexandria Circuit Court on Monday. His legal team argued that he did not intend to kill Fedelia with the "death punch" in a 7-Eleven last July.
Robert told detectives Fedelia called him the n-word, and he snapped. Prosecutors told the jury that the 39-year-old woman did not speak enough English to use such a slur and that even if she had, it did not justify Robert’s response.
“Words alone” are no reason to kill, Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney David Lord said in closing arguments. Which is true. But if you're going to throw around such a derogatory word, you have to be prepared for the consequences. Most people would not go as far as to actually take a life, but there are plenty of viral videos showing people catching fades using the word.
He probably didn't intend on killing her either, but now two lives are over thanks to one person's ignorance, and another's hot temper. So sad.