FORNEY, Texas — A Forney man vacationing in Florida was arrested on a hate crime-related battery charge on Thursday, according to the Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office.
54-year-old Wade Steven Anton, a Texas tourist from Forney, is alleged to have made a racial slur towards another visitor of Beasley Park on Okaloosa Island on Thursday, June 10, 2021, according to the sheriff's office.
"...Anton reportedly told a woman and her children, who are of Asian descent, to 'go back where they came from' and made racial slur during a verbal altercation around 4:15 p.m. Thursday," read a statement from the sheriff's office.
The incident occurred after Anton tells police the woman's children were petting his dogs and ignored his request to leave his dogs alone.
The woman's husband told police they were initially separated by approximately 25 feet during the verbal argument but Anton allegedly ran around the park railings and began punching him repeatedly.
"He told deputies as Anton was running towards him, he pulled a handgun to protect himself," stated the sheriff's office. "The pair was separated by witnesses and no one was seriously injured."
Anton was arrested and charged with hate-crime related battery. Bond information was not available as of press time.