A Florida anesthesiologist known for her ardent support of former President Donald Trump has been charged with a hate crime against a Latino man who was assaulted outside a supermarket, according to news outlets citing police reports.
The incident took place Jan. 20, the day President Joe Biden was inaugurated, in Hialeah, a working-class city in Miami-Dade County with a heavy Cuban-American population. The man was at a Publix supermarket when he asked a woman in line to maintain social distancing in Spanish, The Miami Herald reported, citing a police report.
When the woman, Jennifer Susan Wright, 58, an anesthesiologist at Mount Sinai Medical Center, ignored him, the man asked again in English, the report said.
Wright followed the man to his car, and after he asked her to back up, she became angry, calling the victim a slur and saying “we should have gotten rid of you when we could," according to The Herald.
She also said, “This is not going to be Biden’s America, this is my America” and “we should have burned it all,” the newspaper said.
Wright then took out her keys, scratched the victim’s car while saying he needed to go back to his country; the victim tried calling 911 but Wright punched him, causing his phone to fall to the ground. When he tried to pick it up, she kicked him and stomped on the phone, police said.
Wright was arrested Friday outside her home in Miami Springs, where she was known as a big Trump supporter. Before Halloween, the Herald said, she placed a menacing-looking mannequin that resembled Biden with a sign, “Expose the Biden Crime family.”
Wright was charged with tampering with a victim, criminal mischief and battery with prejudice. She posted $1,000 bond on Friday and had a hearing scheduled for Monday.
Mount Sinai issued a statement Monday announcing that Wright was "no longer responsible for patient care" at its medical center and that the hospital system is fully cooperating with law enforcement.
"Our medical center was founded more than 70 years ago on a foundation of inclusiveness, at a time when patients and doctors alike were facing discrimination in the community and the in the practice of medicine," the statement said. "Today we remain proud to be a mission-driven organization that recognizes and serves the rich diversity of our patient population, our staff and the community."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.