UPDATE: 'Go Back To China;' Coffee Stand Owners Find Gasoline So - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

UPDATE: 'Go Back To China;' Coffee Stand Owners Find Gasoline Soaked Message

SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. – “Go back to China.” That’s the message still spray-painted in red over the parking lot of Coffee Break off North Barker in Spokane Valley. But that’s not all; there’s also evidence whoever the vandal is also tried to burn the stand to the ground.

“It looks like they were able to start the fire, but nothing more than that, which is really fortunate for us, I mean the building's still standing," co-owner Diana Na, 24, told KHQ’s Kelsey Watts.

Na and her sister, Jennifer, 23, opened the stand last summer and are still soaking in the fact their work – their dream – could have been a pile of ashes when they arrived Tuesday morning.

“It’s scary that we could have lost our business or that someone could have been hurt," she added.

A burn mark is evident on one side of the shop, and ash from papers that were lit on fire remains on the other side of the building. Na said at first, they thought they smelled natural gas, but police and fire investigators determined it was gasoline poured all around the stand.

Now, a Spokane Valley arson investigator is looking into the case and it’s potential as a hate crime.

Lucky for the sisters, there are 7 surveillance cameras on the in and outside of the stand, and now they’re pouring over the footage frame by frame hoping whoever did it was caught on camera.

“I really try not to [take it personally] but how can you not?” Na added. “It was directed toward us - even though they got it wrong, we're not Chinese, we're Korean – and not even that, we're American. We were born in the states."

The Na’s parents moved to the United States more than two decades ago and they also faced a similar case of discrimination at their family-owned grocery store years ago.

“It’s still shocking that it’s still happening now,” she added.

But the sisters – and neighbors living in the area – say acts like this won’t be tolerated.

One neighbor, who asked not be identified, told KHQ there has been a spike in crime in the area lately with car break-ins and even a house burglarized through the doggie door. She believes the same people are responsible for this attack, and her message for the vandals was clear:

“You will be caught.”



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