Bowie State University student 2nd Lt. Richard Collins III was visiting friends at the University of Maryland in May 2017 when he was violently attacked and stabbed to death by Sean Urbanski, a white man.
Urbanski is in custody and awaiting trial. On Thursday, Prince George’s County Circuit Court Judge Lawrence Hill Jr.postponed a pretrial hearing where Urbanski’s lawyers were trying to stop the prosecution from presenting evidence that Urbanski was in a racist Facebook group called “Alt-Reich: Nation.” The Facebook group has conveniently been deleted since.
Urbanski’s lawyers want the so-called “highly inflammatory” digital evidence of his racism, such as his “Alt Reich: Nation” membership and data from his phone, kept from being in the trial. His defense team says the evidence could prompt “irrational behavior” from the jury.
His lawyers are trying to say that there is no connection between Urbanski’s participation in racist groups and his unprompted, coldblooded murder of Collins.
That “irrational behavior” would seem to be a jury convicting him of a hate crime after senselessly murdering a Black man while also being a member of racist groups. Imagine that.
Opinion: Second Lt. Richard Collins III Was a Victim of Domestic Terrorism
The hearing is rescheduled for June 5 because Urbanski wasn’t brought to court from jail in time for Thursday’s hearing, according to ABC News.
Urbanski’s lawyers William Brennan and John McKenna also plan to argue for the hate crime and murder charges to be heard in two separate trials, and for the hate crime charge to be dropped altogether, according to local news.
This trial has been pushed back three times in less than 1 1/2 years.
Urbanski, a former University of Maryland student, is facing hate crime and murder charges in Collins’ death. Collins, a member of ROTC, was just days away from graduating from Bowie State University.
Collins was waiting for an Uber with two friends near the Montgomery Hall bus stop when Urbanski stabbed him. Collins died on the way to the hospital.