Mpls. man gets 6 months for assaulting Somali

A Minneapolis man has been sentenced to six months in federal prison for assaulting an 83-year-old Somali man.

George Thompson was sentenced Tuesday on one count of violating a federal hate crimes act named after Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr., two well-known hate crime victims.

Thompson pleaded guilty in August. Court papers say the 64-year-old former employee of the Transportation Security Administration told the older man he was going to kill him and chased him into a Minneapolis street on May 4, 2010.

Thompson admitted targeting the victim because he believed the man was a Muslim Somali. During the assault, prosecutors say Thompson told the man to go back to Africa and yelled ethnic and religious slurs at him.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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