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Man facing charges after Anne Arundel County road rage incident, believed to be hate crime

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BALTIMORE -- A 63-year-old man is facing first-degree assault and other violent charges after a road rage incident escalated in Anne Arundel County. 

Anne Arundel County Police also say there's evidence of a hate crime.

Police responded shortly before 5 p.m. on June 12 to the corner of Marshall Road and 8th Avenue in Brooklyn Park.

But, the chain of events first started more than 10 miles away at the Arundel Mills shopping mall. There, the victim got into a road rage incident with one of the suspect, police said.

"[That suspect] shouted racial slurs at the victim," Anne Arundel County Police spokesperson Marc Limansky said.

WJZ obtained the charging documents in this case and confirmed the slur was the n-word.

The suspect drove home to Brooklyn Park and the victim followed.

While driving back, according to charging documents, the suspect called her husband, Keith Kelly. By the time she and the victim got to the neighborhood, he was standing outside armed with a hammer.

After some arguing, the victim told police Kelly pulled a gun out. Kelly didn't fire it, according to charging documents, only handed it to his wife at some point.

While the arguments continued, the victim walked to the trunk of his car, and then claimed Kelly charged at him -- smashing one of the car's windows with the hammer, the court documents said.

"We're calling this a hate crime because when you couple the racial slur with the following actions by the suspects -- it was very clear that this was a crime motivated by hatred toward members of the African American community," Limansky said.

The victim retaliated, according to charging documents, by grabbing a brake pad piece from the trunk of the car and throwing it at Kelly's neck.

When police questioned Kelly about this, he told them he thought the victim was getting a weapon, charging documents say.

He and his wife also initially denied bringing the gun out, before admitting it was only a BB gun.

Limansky said too many heated arguments are turning into violent crimes.

"Just let it go, if somebody aggravates you on the roadway just let them drive past you. Let them get away from you, don't engage with them because it could really turn into a dangerous situation for everyone involved," he said.

Kelly is  facing second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and destruction of property. Kelly's wife hasn't been charged with anything.

Kelly bonded out of jail Thursday. He is due back in court for a preliminary hearing on July 10.

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