Mathu Dwain Karcher
Mathu Dwain Karcher

A white Portland man is accused of yelling "N*****, you're in the wrong neighborhood" at a Black man. He's also accused of attempting to get his pit bull to attack the man, police and prosecutors say.

Mathu Karcher, 40, is charged with menacing and intimidation (a bias crime) from the incident that court records indicate happened on Sunday. No location for the incident is given, but he was arrested by Portland Police Bureau officers from the north precinct.

A probable cause affidavit for Karcher's arrest says he closely followed a Black man who was walking home after getting off the bus. Karcher, who had a pit bull on a leash, yelled for the dog to "get him," it says. The dog didn't attack the man. The target of the alleged harassment couldn't run away, the affidavit says, because he was already injured. That's when Karcher allegedly said "N*****, you're in the wrong neighborhood" and that if his dog wouldn't attack him that "he would kick the victim's ass."

The man walked to a nearby Plaid Pantry store. Karcher followed and "continued to threaten defendant that he was going to assault victim in the store." An employee told Karcher to leave—he did—and the man called police. The cops found Karcher shortly later. The Plaid Pantry employee backed up the man's account that he was being threatened.

Karcher told police "he encountered a black male in a suit earlier who exited the bus and appeared lost." He said he tried to speak to the man, but he "started freaking out" about Karcher's pit bull. He only followed the man, Karcher said, because he was "traveling the same way." He denied following the man into the store.

Karcher was booked yesterday on the two misdemeanor charges and plead not guilty. He's got an extensive criminal history—three felony and 13 misdemeanor convictions, per court records—and made the news in December when he "he crashed into a Portland police car, fled to his mobile home and initially refused to surrender after being hit with a Taser."