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Man shot with paintballs has warning for community, suspects


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    SACRAMENTO, California (KOVR) — Edson So pointed out his busted lip along with bruises and cuts on his neck and chest. He was outside with his wife in South Sacramento when someone drove by shooting him with paintballs.

It happened Friday at around 12:30 in the afternoon. So says the suspects were driving on Hitchcock Way before turning onto Valley Hi Drive.

“It hurt pretty bad. Mainly my lip and my neck were the worst part,” he told CBS13.

The attack came just as the Asian community kicks off AAPI Heritage Month. While So isn’t sure if he was targeted because he’s Asian, he’s definitely on higher alert than usual considering anti-Asian violence.

“I think that’s just the general overall feeling of all Asian-Americans and Asians in the community right now,” said Janice O’Malley, Board Member of OCA Sacramento.

OCA Sacramento kicked off AAPI Heritage Month on a positive note Saturday. The group handed out hundreds of free bags of groceries to the community.

“This is an opportunity to educate the community at large about who we are and the rich experience that we bring to this country,” said O’Malley.

“This year it’s become a lot more important for us to tell people we are a part of you. We might look different, but we have always been a part of very important milestones for your own country,” said Ram Thanapandian, president of APAPA Sacramento.

Thanapandian says it’s critical that AAPI Heritage Month brings education about the current climate in hopes to stop violence like the paintball attack on So, even if wasn’t out of Asian hate.

“But right now what you’re doing is a lot more emotional damage to not just an individual but his whole community,” said Thanapandian.

“I just want to let them know that, eventually you know someone might get hurt or you know the cops might find them and they’ll be in big trouble about it,” said So.

So filed a police report. He’s now hoping anyone with surveillance cameras in the area will come forward.

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