BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Two women are facing hate crime charges in the violent assault of a 46-year-old mother and her 15-year-old daughter in Maverick Square on February 15, Suffolk County District Attorney Rachel Rollins announced Friday.
That mother and daughter, as well as several witnesses, said Jenny Leigh Ennamorati and Stephanie Armstrong, both 25, attacked the victims without provocation after hearing them laughing and speaking in Spanish. The pair also allegedly told the victims "this is America," "speak English," and to "go back" to their country during the assault.
Ennamorati and Armstrong both face two misdemeanor counts of assault and battery, as well as two felony counts of violating constitutional rights with bodily injury. Ennamorati also faces a felony charge of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (a shod foot) for allegedly kicking the victims.
The pair are due in East Boston District Court on March 9.
Both the mother and the daughter sought medical treatment after the attack.
"There is no place for hatred or bigotry in Suffolk County," DA Rollins wrote in a release. "The sense of entitlement and privilege these defendants must have felt to utter these hateful and racist words, and then to physically attack a mother and her child for laughing and speaking Spanish is outrageous and reprehensible."
She said her office specifically requested the Boston Police Department's Civil Rights Unit investigate the case.
"The rise in Hate Crimes is completely unacceptable," Rollins wrote. "I take these allegations very seriously and will personally be watching this case at every step."
Rollins went on to say that all are welcome in Suffolk County, "no matter the God you worship, who you love, how you identify, the language you speak, your immigration status, or your physical and mental abilities."
At a press conference on Monday, the mother spoke about the lingering affects of the attack.
"I’m having nightmares," she said. "I’m afraid to take the train to work, and my family is afraid to speak Spanish in public. My daughter is still wearing a neck brace and she’s having trouble sleeping. We are all very shaken."