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Family of assault victim drawing strength from their faith

Family members and friends are standing watch over a 26-year-old man who King County prosecutors say was the victim of an unprovoked racist attack last month.

DaShawn Horne remains in a medically induced coma at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

His uncle, Rodney King, said the family is drawing strength from their deep faith in God. He said his sister has already forgiven the man accused of beating her son nearly to death because he was black.

“We have that undying unyielding faith, that gives my sister the power of forgiveness,” King said.

He says LaDonna Horne goes to her car to cry, but otherwise has hardly left her son’s side.

“She’s keeping a vigil at his bedside," King said. "You know, motivating him, telling him he’s going to beat this and encouraging him."

On Saturday, a large crowd of family and friends gathered outside of Harborview Medical Center at Harborview Park for a healing and justice vigil for Horne. 

DaShawn Horne is from Kent and works for the U.S. Postal Service. He has a 16-month-old son.

Horne spent the night before the attack with a woman he met at a Seattle night club. Police say that as Horne left in the morning, the woman’s brother, Julian Tuimauga, said racial slurs as he beat him unconscious with an aluminum bat.

A Lyft driver who was supposed to pick up Horne witnessed the attack and called 911.

Tuimauga has been charged with first-degree assault and malicious harassment — a hate crime.

[asset-images[{"caption": "DaShawn Horne with his son Deion.", "fid": "142385", "style": "placed_left", "uri": "public://201802/IMG_89350.jpg", "attribution": ""}]]Annette Hayes, the U.S. attorney for Western Washington, said her office works closely with law enforcement and prosecutors on cases like this.

“We do have jurisdiction around that kind of a crime, but whether or not we would particularly take this crime is something we have not decided," she said.

Hayes said prosecuting hate crimes is a top priority for the U.S. Attorney’s office because of the impact it can have on a community. 

Horne's recovery will be a long process, family members said. A GoFundMe page to help has raised nearly  $89,000.