Portland police make arrest in hate crime against Casco Bay High School students

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PORTLAND — A city man was arrested late Friday afternoon, Feb. 3, in connection with an alleged hate crime against four black students at Casco Bay High School last week.

Police Lt. Robert Martin said Jamie Hoffman, 20, was charged with two counts of assault, criminal threatening with a dangerous weapon, and interference with constitutional and civil rights.

The incident allegedly took place after school on Jan. 27 at a METRO bus stop on Allen Avenue.

“The swiftness of this arrest would not have been possible without the assistance of students from the Portland Public Schools and the members of the public that heard reports of this crime through the media and then came forward with the crucial information needed to aid in identifying Hoffman,” Martin said.

He said Hoffman was taken into custody at police headquarters after being interviewed by detectives.

In addition the charges related to last week’s incident, Hoffman was also arrested on two outstanding warrants for failure to appear on charges burglary to a motor vehicle and theft.

Martin said Hoffman allegedly used “racial slurs” against the high school students, and threatened them with a screwdriver after two other students intervened.

“This type of incident is disturbing and has no place in our community. We have forwarded this case to the Maine attorney general for possible action under the Maine Civil Rights Act,” Martin said.