Hookah lounge customers of Iranian descent were hate-crime victims threatened with death by a 29-year-old Orange County man sporting tattoos from a white supremacist gang.
But it was the hate-crime suspect who will have his life disrupted after he was sentenced to 60 days in jail.
Andrew Alan Carruthers pleaded guilty Friday to one felony criminal threats charge, as well as misdemeanor counts of resisting arrest and committing a civil rights violation, with a sentence-enhancing hate crime allegation.
Carruthers harassed customers at the BluFig Hookah Lounge in Lake Forest the night of Sept. 15, according to Senior Deputy District Attorney Cynthia Nichols. She said he was asked to leave, but kept returning.
At some point, he threatened to kill customers and employees at the lounge, prompting a patron to call 911, Nichols said.
Carruthers ran from Orange County sheriff’s deputies before surrendering, according to Nichols, who said he has tattoos associated with white supremacist gangs.
Carruthers had been facing up to six years in prison.
— Staff and wire reports