Knife-wielding 7-Eleven clerk charged with hate crime after yelling racial slurs at customers

LOMBARD, IL (WLS/CNN) - A 7-Eleven clerk in Lombard, IL, faces hate crime charges after a racist encounter with several minority customers, according to police.

"The clerk began yelling racial slurs at them. They continued shopping, he continued yelling slurs at them," Lombard police Lt. Joe Grage explained.

Police say four teenagers, three of them African American and the other a Latino, never said anything to the clerk. But shortly after they entered the store about 10:30 Friday night, police say 32-year-old Ranferi Basilo began yelling at them.

They decided to leave rather than continue to face the abuse. But the clerk then allegedly followed them to the parking lot.

"He followed them outside, pulled a knife, they began to run, slashed the tires on their car," Grage said.

The men then called police who were able to confirm their account by watching security camera video from inside the store.

Prosecutors charged Basilo Saturday afternoon with two counts of felony hate crime, criminal damage to property and aggravated assault.

Basilo was being held on $50,000 bond.

Police say they still don’t know what provoked the clerk.

“Our investigation hasn’t shown anything provoked him to behave in that manner,” Grage said.

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