BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Maryland State Police is investigating the assault of a Pennsylvania man driving through Maryland as a possible hate crime after two men reportedly drove up beside him and used racial slurs, before forcing him to wreck his vehicle.

Police say the victim, a 20-year-old African American man, was in a dark maroon Ford Focus, heading north on Route 1 in Darlington on May 27, when two men in a black pickup drove up behind him and began honking the horn.

The two suspects are described as white males, in their mid to late 20s. Both are about 5’10” tall and weigh 180 lbs, and were wearing blue jeans and baseball caps. One had a small amount of facial hair.

The suspects were in a small, black pickup truck with a long bed. The victim reported there was a large Confederate flag mounted in the bed of the truck, which may have a dent in the front right bumper.

After pulling up behind the victim, the driver of the pickup swerved and tried to pull beside him, forcing the victim to swerve in order to avoid a wreck.

As the suspects pulled up beside him, they rolled down their window and starting yelling racial slurs at him, according to the victim.

The victim told police the suspects then cut him off, forcing him to hydroplane and hit the guardrails on both sides of the road.

As he got out to look at the damage to his car, the two suspects stopped and began to taunt him.

The victim then followed the truck north along Route 1, to the entrance of the Conowingo pool.

When both vehicles stopped, the suspects reportedly approached the victim, and continued using racial slurs, then pushed him to the ground.

After the victim was pushed, a fight ensued. The victim defended himself, and manged to subdue the suspects, who then got back into their truck and headed south on Route 1.

Police say the victim did not require medical attention.

Anyone who was in the area of Rt. 1 north of Castleton Road or in the area of the entrance to the Conowingo pool on the afternoon of May 27, is urged to contact State Police criminal investigators at 410-996-7813. Callers may remain anonymous.

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