MANTECA, Calif. (KGO) -- There's a sense of relief for the family of a 71-year-old Sikh man after his suspected attackers, one the son of Union City's police chief, were put behind bars.
Eighteen-year-old Tyrone McAllister was taken into custody on Wednesday. He's the estranged son of Union City Police Chief Darryl McAllister.
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Chief McAllister says he helped Manteca police track down his son, who was arrested and is now facing felony charges for allegedly attacking Sahib Singh Natt, an innocent Sikh man.
Investigators are now looking into whether the attack was a hate crime.
At 6 a.m. on Monday, Natt can be seen on his daily walk around a park in Manteca. Two men can be seen on the surveillance video walking towards Natt, who tries to walk around them. Thirty seconds later, the man in black kicks Natt to the ground.
"They kicked really hard, really hard," said Natt's son-in-law, Maneet Singh Virk.
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Natt's family says the 71-year-old grandfather came home injured after the man in black kicked him repeatedly, then spat on him before running away.
Manteca police arrested at 16-year-old boy and 18-year-old Tyrone McAllister in connection with the attack. Police have identified McAllister as the primary attacker wearing black.
"Everybody's scared, you know, me, everybody," said Virk.
Union City Police Chief Darryl McALlister posted a lengthy statement on the department's Facebook page, explaining that Tyrone is his estranged son who he hasn't seen for months. He says in part, "Words can barely describe how embarrassed, dejected and hurt my wife, daughters and I feel right now. Violence and hatred is not what we have taught our children."
"It doesn't matter that the assailant was the son of a police chief. It could have been anyone," said Prabhjot Sigh, one of the founders of The Sikh Coalition, a nationwide Sikh civil rights group. He says since 9/11, the Sikh community has often been targeted, including another incident in the Central Valley last week when a Sikh man was attacked and his truck vandalized.
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"Unfortunately, there's lots of people in our society who have hate inside of them or they may be misguided for whatever reason and they choose to take out their own frustrations on people who look different," SIngh said.
Police say Natt, the victim in the Manteca attack, saw one of the suspects wave a gun in the air.
Both the 16-year-old and McAllister are being booked for attempted robbery, elder abuse and assault with a deadly weapon.
The district attorney will have to review the case and decide if there's evidence of a hate crime.
Union City police chief's son accused of beating 71-year-old Sikh man
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