[image-1] A 39-year-old Summerville man was arrested Thursday night after he allegedly yelled racial slurs and punched an African-American man on King Street, police say. James Alden Vige is being held at the Al Cannon Detention Center on charges of hate intimidation and third-degree assault and battery.
According to a Charleston Police Department press release, the incident occurred about 7:40 p.m. along the 300 block of King Street, which stretches from Marion Square to Liberty Street near the College of Charleston.
Police say witnesses saw Vige yelling racial slurs at a man "for some unknown reason" as he walked on King Street.
"Vige continued to yell racial slurs and profanities at the victim as he approached him," the police account says. "Witnesses told police Vige then punched the victim and shoved him to the ground."
The two men do not know each other, police say. The victim was not injured and declined medical treatment.
The City of Charleston's hate intimidation ordinance was passed by City Council in 2018 as a local version of a hate crime law which would strengthen punishment for crimes based on race, color, creed, religion, ancestry, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical or mental disability, or national origin. South Carolina does not have a state hate crime law.