On March 30, 2022, Washington County Circuit Court Judge Brandon Thompson found Sean Lawrence Michel-White guilty of two counts of first-degree bias crime, second-degree bias crime, two counts of fourth-degree assault, and harassment in a bench trial. He was then sentenced to three years of formal probation after serving seven months in jail. Deputy District Attorney Mitchell Diesko prosecuted the case against the defendant.
On August 29, 2021, the defendant went to an ISKCON Temple located in Hillsboro, Oregon. Members of the temple initially welcomed the defendant but asked that he wear a mask. He refused and became combative. He then entered the temple, attempted to knock over statues, hit two members of the congregation, bit them, and caused injury to multiple people.
Community members were able to subdue the defendant until Hillsboro police arrived. He told officers he was a Hindu god and that members of the temple were not practicing their faith correctly because they were worshipping the wrong god.
The Washington County District Attorney’s Office wishes to commend Hillsboro police and community members for their actions.
In addition to his probation, Judge Thompson also ordered the defendant to undergo mental health treatment and to have no contact with the temple or any of the victims.
This office was recently awarded $300,000 in competitive grant funding to help launch the new Bias Crime Multidisciplinary Team (MDT). Team members are dedicated to protecting vulnerable community members and holding offenders accountable. To learn more about these efforts, visit our website.
Source: Washington County District Attorney