California

Man wearing Russian MAGA hat beaten in restaurant bathroom, California cops say

A “Make America Great Again” hat — in Russian — sparked a beating last month in a Southern California restroom, Hermosa Beach police say in a press release.

David Delgado, 32, of Winnetka, near Los Angeles, approached a man wearing the hat in a restaurant bathroom about 6:40 p.m. Sept. 2 and asked him what it said, police reported.

When the man told him it read “Make America Great Again” in Russian, Delgado began punching him in the face until he fell down, said Sgt. Robert Higgins in the release.

Delgado continued punching the man, then grabbed the hat and ran away, Higgins said in the release. Police arrested Delgado at his home Tuesday following an investigation.

Police aren’t sure what exactly about the hat drove Delgado to violence, The Daily Breeze reported.

“It’s not clear who insulted who, but the hat is at the center of this whole mess,” Higgins said, according to the publication.

“Make America Great Again,” or MAGA, hats are based on President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign slogan.

Versions of the hat with the slogan in Russian, likely referencing investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election, are available on Amazon and other online retailers.

Actor Alec Baldwin, who portrays Trump on “Saturday Night Live,” was spotted in 2017 wearing one, The Hill reported.

In September, a Portland, Oregon, grand jury declined to indict two men accused of pummeling a man wearing a “MAGA” hat outside a bar Aug. 24, The Oregonian reported.

Similar incidents have been reported across the nation since the 2016 election, while others have compared the hats to symbols of racism and hatred.

Related stories from Sacramento Bee

Don Sweeney has been a newspaper reporter and editor in California for more than 25 years. He has been a real-time reporter based at The Sacramento Bee since 2016.
  Comments