WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- Two teens have been arrested in connection to the assault and robbery of a veteran Marine sergeant, D.C. police said.
Police said one 17-year-old male and one 17-year-old female were involved in the attack. The male was charged with aggravated assault and the female was charged with robbery.
Christopher Marquez, who served in the Marine Corps from 2003 to 2011, told police he was assaulted while eating at a McDonald's.
Marquez said he believes the February 12th attack was racially motivated.
“The kids were asking me if I think that black lives mattered,” Marquez told USA Today. “I was ignoring them, just because I felt intimidated. I felt how they approached me, it was very hostile. I felt they were really trying to intimidate me and just trying to start a confrontation with me.”
Marquez says he's still recovering from the beating.
"I'm having problems with my memory and there are other issues. My speech was slurring and I was drooling that got a lot better," Marquez said. "I'm going to go on the regiment how they test people with Traumatic Brain Injury from Iraq and Afghanistan and that can last anywhere from a few months to a year. You never know especially because my concussion was bad."
Police say a third suspect was involved in the assault.
Marquez said he was happy to see the people who attack were arrested.
"It really reinforced my views that we are the greatest country in the world and I think Americans are awesome despite the fact that there are small crowds of people who are bad. You have your bad apples, but yeah this is amazing," said Marquez.
Marquez served in the Marine Corps from 2003 to 2011. It's what he learned during his service, that's helping him get through this difficult time.
"It keeps me from feeling sorry for myself just because going through the wars in Afghanistan I saw my fiends die and lose limbs and I can't see myself as a victim it's really hard."
A person from Connecticut who never even met Marquez set up a Go Fund Me page to raise money to pay for his medical bills. The goal is to raise $40,000. They're just a few thousand dollars shy of the goal. If you would like to make a donation click here.
Anyone who has information regarding this case should call police at 202-727-9099. Additionally, information may be submitted to the TEXT TIP LINE by text messaging 50411. Crime Solvers of Washington, DC currently offers a reward of up to $1,000 to anyone who provides information that leads to the arrest and indictment of the person or persons responsible for a crime committed in the District of Columbia.
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