A black man on a Metrobus attacked a 52-year-old disabled, homeless passenger, spitting in his face, and blaming the victim, who is white, for decades of slavery in the United States, police say.
The incident occurred on a Q1 bus, which had departed the Silver Spring Transit Center and was headed for the Shady Grove Metro Station. It was around 5 p.m. on Sunday, September 24.
According to court documents, Marquis Evans-Royster, 27, approached the disabled, homeless man, looked directly into his eyes and stated, “You owe me for making my grandmother a slave.”
The victim remained calm and did his best to ignore the racially motivated comments. However, the confrontation became tenser when Evans-Royster allegedly began to rummage through the victim’s pockets. A number of bystanders attempted to intervene, prompting Evans-Royster to charge at various passengers, spit in the victim’s face and threaten to douse the victim with a cup full of urine.
The bus driver told investigators that Evans-Royster boarded the bus without paying a fare and “almost immediately” started to harass the two white passengers. In addition to the slavery remarks, the bus driver recalled Evans-Royster stating all white people are evil and suggesting that the bus’ two white passengers should die.
Metro Transit Police caught Evans-Royster four days later at the Wheaton Metro Station. They have since charged him with a slew of crimes, including, race/religious harassment, robbery, theft, second-degree assault, destruction of property and possession of a false I.D. All told, the charges carry a combined maximum penalty of more than 30 years in prison.
Court records indicate Evans-Royster works as a tow truck driver, carries an extensive criminal record and has two children. He lives in an apartment along the 13900 block of Castle Boulevard in Silver Spring with his sister.