Jay Dee Harp III, 35, of Tacoma, Washington, has been charged with a hate crime and assault for a violent attack on a married lesbian couple at the Seattle Seahawks versus Arizona Cardinals game at Century Link Stadium in Seattle on Dec. 30, 2018.
As can be seen in the video, Harp throws a violent punch to the face of the female victim. But what prosecutors allege he did to the women before, for the bulk of the game as he drank beer after beer, was sexually harass and threaten the couple and then allegedly sexually assault one of them.
And that was before the physical assault captured on video.
After returning with a beer, Harp is alleged to have sexually assaulted one of the women. Soon, nearby fans grabbed Harp and took him “to the ground.” But, prosecutors say, Harp “was able to get loose from being held down, stood up” and that’s when the video begins.
Harp was arrested, booked and released on a $25,000 bond. But days later, prosecutors asked that his bond be increased to $100,000. A warrant for his arrest was issued. He does not appear in online jail records so it’s not clear if he has been apprehended.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Harp’s Alleged Harassment of the Couple, Which Included Lewd Sexual References, Suggestions & Threats, Began Soon Into the Game & Lasted Until the Third Quarter
It was the third quarter of the game between the Seahawks and the Cardinals. Up in section 118 in Century Link Stadium, Harp sat next to a lesbian couple, who are named in court documents. One of the women’s mother was also in attendance.
According to the prosecutor’s probable cause document, Harp got up from his seat to get beer “many times during the game” and had to pass the women each time. And prosecutors say that “each time he walked past them, according to (the mother), (Harp) would step on their feet.” Worse, he allegedly made “harassing comments” including, “Do you suck dick?”
Police say he was “heavily intoxicated.” And his alleged harassment continued with similar comments and remarks including, “Do you need a man in your life?” Harp is also alleged, while “motioning towards his mid-section and thrusting his hands,” ask if the victims “Wanted some dick?” And he was relentless, the women and witnesses say: “Suck my dick” and “Fuc*ing dike” were more of the remarks Harp is alleged to have made.
And it got worse.
2. Harp Again Went For Beer & Upon His Return, Allegedly Grabbed a Victim’s Jacket, Unzipped it & Grabbed Her Breast, Police Say
According to the prosecutor’s charging documents, Harp returned with beer, walked past the couple and then “grabbed (a victim) by her jacket …pulled on (it) and unzipped it.” One witness later stated that it looked like the male had grabbed (her) breast and was not letting go.
“She tried to push him off of her and he threw his beer right in her face.”
And that’s when the melee began as fans in nearby aisles had apparently had had enough and Harp was taken down. But he did not stay down. Harp leaped up and delivered a closed-fist punch to a victim’s face, resulting in a broken nose, lacerations, and a chipped front tooth.
“Did he just punch a girl? What the fu*k? He punched a girl dude. What the fu*k?”
A near-melee ensued as fans tried to hold him until police arrived.
“Taze him! Taze him!”
And that’s when round two of the assault got underway.
Read the prosecutor’s charging documents here:
3. As People Yelled ‘Taze Him! Taze Him!’ to Police, Harp Began His Attack on Law Enforcement, Prosecutors Say
A Washington state trooper working the game was flagged down. The first law enforcement officer on the scene, he was soon followed by a King County Sheriff’s Office deputy and soon after that, a state police captain. All were wearing uniforms or police insignia, it was noted in court documents.
The officers all struggled to place Harp under arrest; he fought them, records show.
Harp said in a “rage” to the state police captain that they’d “better let him go.” As the trooper told him to calm down and stop resisting, Harp is alleged to have said, “No, fu*k you!” and is then alleged to have punched the officer in the stomach with his right fist. He was tazed so police could “gain control of the defendant’s violent behavior” but he continued to resist.
4. Harp Was Charged With a Hate Crime, & Assault on the Women & Police. He Posted a $25,000 Bail & Was Released the Next Day. Prosecutors Later Asked & Received an Increase of His Bail to $100,000
Harp was arrested and initially held on $25,000 bail which was later upped to $100,000 based on “the violent nature of the defendant’s attack and the danger the defendant poses to the community if released from confinement,” King County Superior Court records obtained by Heavy read. A warrant was issued for his arrest.
“While the defendant has no known criminal history, the defendant’s willingness to sexually assault a female – a complete stranger – in a crowded sports stadium and then violently punch another female victim in the face demonstrates that he is a clear danger to the community. Bail in the amount of $100,000 is necessary. The State also asks for no contact with the victims,” Rhyan C. Anderson, King County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney wrote.
Ultimately Harp bonded out of jail. He is facing charges of malicious harassment, the hate crime charge, second-degree assault with substantial bodily harm, and assault in the third degree, assault on a law enforcement officer. All are felonies.
5. One of the Women Told Prosecutors She Believes Harp’s Attack Was Motivated by Homophobia
The two women, a married couple, have been named in court documents. Indeed, one of the victims can be seen wearing a jersey with her last name on it in the video. However, Heavy won’t name the victims as there’s an alleged sexual assault involved unless they publicly come forward.
One gave this statement to the police:
“I have been an active member of the LGBT community for decades and fought for marriage equality as an adult. The
man’s chronic and repeated comments about our sexuality, based on my experience, suggest my sexual orientation may have motivated today’s assault.”
Washington’s ‘malicious harassment’ law addresses malicious and intentional crimes against people and property based on a “perception of the victim’s race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation …”
It is a hate crime statute.