Macy’s assault victim requests leniency for attacker
Since Damire Palmer pleaded guilty to the charge against him, an agreement makes sure the 18-year-old will not have a felony record.
FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - (8/12/2020) - The man accused of beating up a Macy's employee inside a mid-Michigan mall is pleading guilty to the charge against him.
The assault was caught on video and seen across the country.
18-year-old Damire Palmer shared his side of the story in court Wednesday. He gave testimony as part of a plea agreement.
The Genesee County Prosecutor said the Macy’s store manager Palmer is accused of assaulting did not want to have to take the stand. David Leyton said the man is still dealing with the trauma of the assault.
So, they decided on a plea agreement that does not lessen Palmer’s charge until he completes his sentence.
Per the victim's request, the agreement makes sure the 18-year-old will not have a felony record.
After pleading guilty to the 10-year felony against him, assault with intent to do great bodily less than murder, Palmer shared with the Judge what led up to the assault inside the Genesee Valley Mall on June 15, 2020.
“I asked him a question about some clothes,” Palmer said. “I asked him about the jacket type that I was about to get.”
Palmer said the man answered him, they laughed and then his brother told him the store manager called him the n-word. He admitted he has since learned his brother lied to him.
“Why would your brother do that?” the assistant prosecutor asked. “I wouldn’t know. I honestly wouldn’t,” Palmer replied.
The assistant prosecutor told Palmer he understands the anger that would fuel the assault. But, he said, the store manager has asked that the charge does not stay with Palmer forever.
“Basically, you beat this guy so bad he was quite bloody correct?” the assistant prosecutor asked. “Yes,” Palmer said. “And did you know that he has agreed that you should be treated as a youthful offender even though you beat on him like that?” the assistant prosecutor continued. “No, I did not know that,” Palmer responded.
Per the plea agreement, if the 18-year-old completes his sentence, the felony charge will be dropped from his record. Instead, it will be replaced with a misdemeanor charge of aggravated assault.
In a raw moment, the assistant prosecutor explained the significance to Palmer.
“Do you understand what kind of break that man gave you?” he asked. “Yes,” Palmer said.
Palmer's punishment is up to a circuit court judge. Prosecutor Leyton said he could be handed anything from probation to serving the 10-years in prison.
Palmer will learn his sentence September 1st.
“Nobody’s looking to hang felonies on young men. I never have and I never will. This was a bad crime though, and he has to face the consequences,” he said.
Leyton added Palmer’s older brother could still be charged. His Office will be reviewing Palmer’s testimony to help them make that determination.
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