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Hate crime charges added for Reisterstown man accused of shooting construction worker

Hate crime charges added for Reisterstown man accused of shooting construction worker
Brandon Troy Higgs, 24, faces life imprisonment for two charges of attempted murder. (Courtesy Photo / BCPD)

A Reisterstown man who was arrested and charged in December in connection with the shooting of a construction worker during a fight on Bryanstone Road is now facing additional charges, including four counts of committing a hate crime, according to court records.

Brandon Troy Higgs, 24, of the 300 block of Bryanstone Road in Reisterstown, faces a total of 12 counts and a maximum penalty of life imprisonment for two counts of attempted murder in the first degree. Charging documents state that Higgs assaulted the two construction workers and attempted to murder them specifically because of their color and race.

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Higgs also did not have a concealed carry license, court documents said.

When arrested, Higgs initially faced charges of first-degree murder, first-degree assault and use of a firearm in commission of a violent crime involving two black construction workers. He now faces the additional hate crime and concealed weapon charges.

James E. Crawford Jr., who is listed as Higgs’ defense attorney, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Higgs was arrested by county police around 1:22 p.m. on Dec. 20, after an altercation between him and the two men. The altercation began after a dog that belonged to Higgs rbegan walking through wet concrete that the two men were laying in a driveway,according to court documents.

Higgs, who at the time was not wearing a shirt, allegedly referred to one of the victims as “boy” and told both construction workers to “go back to Africa.” Higgs returned to his home and returned fully clothed with a handgun, according to court documents.

The two black men said that Higgs verbally abused and then pushed one before pulling out the gun and pointing it at one of them. One man attempted to force Higgs to drop the gun; during a struggle, one of the men was shot in the leg, according to court records.

Higgs’ account of events is different: It says that one of the men punched him in the back of the head, which is why he drew his gun, and that he was then tackled, according to court documents. The two black men have not been charged in the incident.

A criminal trial is scheduled for mid-June.

This story may be updated.

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