Leaders of various Filipino immigrant-support groups will rally in Van Nuys Friday in support of a family who was attacked and subjected to racial slurs at a North Hollywood drive-thru last month.
The group, including the Filipino Migrant Center, the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns, and Migrante Los Angeles, will be joined by members of the Roque family and their attorneys, who will call for a full investigation into the attack and demand that the alleged assailant be prosecuted.
According to the family, Nerissa Roque, 47, and Patricia Roque, 19, were waiting in the drive-thru of a McDonald’s restaurant in mid-May when their vehicle was struck from behind by another car. The other driver got out of his vehicle and approached the women, using anti-Asian slurs and threatening to “kill” them, according to the family.
The women called the police, and while waiting for them to arrive, Nerissa Roque’s husband, 62-year-old Gabriel Roque, arrived at the scene. The other motorist then attacked Nerissa and Gabriel in a physical altercation that left Gabriel Roque with injuries including a broken rib, according to the family.
Much of the encounter was captured on cell phone video.
“This was the most traumatic experience of our lives. I feared that the suspect would kill us because of what we looked like — because we are Asian,” Patricia Roque said in a statement. “We are demanding a full investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department and demand that this case be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
The family contends that police and prosecutors have not taken action against the alleged assailant over the physical altercation or racial slurs, focusing instead on the car crash in the drive-thru line. Fox11 reported that the assailant was cited and released, and subsequently missed a court appearance.
An attorney for the family told the station the alleged assailant is a neighbor of the family in North Hollywood.
The group’s rally on Friday will be held outside the District Attorney’s Van Nuys office, calling for the assailant to be prosecuted “to the full extent of the law.”