Trace Riff: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

A white Kansas man accused of kicking a black toddler in the back was arrested, jailed and then soon after, released, according to police records and reports.

Trace Riff, 31, allegedly kicked a 1-year-old child in the back while wearing cowboy boots and yelled that the boy was a ni**er in a Wichita supermarket.

Riff, who has a lengthy criminal record in three states, and is reported to be homeless, was nonetheless able to be bailed out of jail on a $3,500 bond sans conditions. Records show Riff was already on probation on methamphetamine charges when he was released from jail.

Here’s what you need to know:


1. Toddler Jhavii Fry’s Mother Describes What Happened to Her 16-Month-Old

Last Sunday morning, Lashantai Whitaker and her children, baby Jhavii and her 11-year-old daughter, went to a Dillons grocery store in Wichita, the kids behind her as they entered, the girl holding the toddler’s hand. Whitaker told local media she heard a thud and her daughter’s scream; a man, reported to be Riff, kicked the baby in the back. The child fell face-down.

Riff tried to leave the store but was stopped by otehr shoppers who held him until police came, Whitaker said. And she said that while being held, Riff began yelling the n-word decaleing himself to be a white supremacist. Whitaker is quoted as saying Riff “sounded like a madman.”

The 16-month-old child was examined by paramedics and according to a report, his winter coat protected him from any injury from the assault.


2. Police Charged Riff With Battery, Resisting Arrest & ‘Ethnic Intimidation’

Court records show Riff was charged with battery, “physical contact in a rude manner,” resisting arrest, called “interfering with an officer,” and ethnic intimidation.

According to the Wichita Eagle, a police report reads that Riff “was suspected of using alcohol …(and) used a ‘personal weapon,’” in the alleged assault. Presumably the boot.

Riff was booked into the Sedgwick County jail and several hours later, was released on a $3,500 bond, The Eagle reported. A spokesman said there were no special bond conditions, the paper reported.

According to court records, the charges are misdemeanors and the case is being heard in Wichita Municipal Court.

Wichita Police emailed a statement to Heavy, which confirms law enforcement is “investigating a racially motivated bias crime…” Police said, “…through the investigation it was learned Riff walked into the Dillon store and kicked a 1-year-old victim in the back causing the child to fall on the floor while yelling obscenities and racial slurs. Officers arrived and took Trace into custody who was being held on the ground by citizens. (He) was booked for battery that was bias and racially motivated …”

Documents show this was the second time in less than two days that Riff was arrested by police in Wichita. And released.


3. Riff Has a Lengthy Criminal History Including Violent Crimes & Has a History of Mental Illness, Records Show

Riff‘s history with the law spans three states and includes failure to report to probation and parole officials following release from jails and psychiatric hospitals, records and reports show. His arrests and convictions include drug and violent crimes, records show, beginning 16 years ago.

Charges beginning when he was a teen include stealing from cars and running from police in Oklahoma. At 15, in 2002, it’s reported that he’d stolen a car that ended with a crash as police chased him.

Also in Oklahoma, he has two driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol convictions from 2007 and 2008 with a domestic violence conviction in 2009, court records show. In 2012, Riff had two misdemeanor convictions; drug possession and public intoxication.

Online court records show that a year later, he was charged again, and convicted again, for domestic violence, this time in Nevada. A year after that, Riff was convicted and could have been given jail time for a felony meth case but instead was placed on probation, court records show.

By 2016, Riff was in Kansas and was arrested for assaulting a cop. Finally, he gets two years of jail and psychiatric hospitalization but when released, and under supervision by a parole officer, took off several times. Ultimately, in October, just two months ago, he was released from corrections supervision and free.

A day before his arrest for attacking the toddler, records show, he was picked up on a drug charge. And let go.


4. On Probation, It’s Not Clear How a Court Released Him From Custody. And Riff Had Been Arrested & Released the Day Before the Alleged Attack on the Child

Court documents show Riff is currently on probation on a felony methamphetamine case in Oklahoma. According to the Eagle, an Oklahoma Department of Corrections said he “appears to be in good standing.” The Star reported no revocation of his probation.

A day before Riff allegedly attacked the toddler, he was arrested for huffing or illegal inhalation. Jail records do not show him being booked, or at least that information is not online, but Wichita Municipal Court records do show him facing a charge.

A report by the Wichita Eagle reads that according to financial disclosures, presumably to ascertain if he was eligible for a public defender, Riff said he had no job and was homeless.


5. Whitaker Said She’s Afraid Trace Could Attack Another Child. Dillons Has Responded by Sending the Family Gifts

Whitaker and the child’s grandmother Yolanda Frierson are concerned that Riff is now free to attack another child and could “run,” from the charges, they told local media.

“I don’t understand: He’s out just hours after he attacked a baby,” the grandmother said with mother Whitaker adding, “He could attack someone else’s kid . . . if he’s out and he’s everywhere.”

Meanwhile, Dillions store managers have been trying to make amends, Whitaker said.

“So nice of the Dillons manager and district manager to come baring gifts. They have been so nice and caring about this whole ordeal.”