Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
Susan Kang Schroeder
WHITE SUPREMACISTS TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR
BEATING AND STOMPING ON MAN IN SEAL BEACH
HATE CRIME ATTACK
SANTA ANA – Two self-proclaimed white supremacists will be arraigned for beating a man unconscious in a Seal Beach hate crime attack. Ryan Joseph Swanson, 19, Huntington Beach, and Nicholas Tyler Gibbs, 20, Anaheim, are charged with one felony count of aggravated assault, one felony count of battery with serious bodily injury, one felony count of second degree robbery, one felony count of unlawful taking of a vehicle, and sentencing enhancements for committing a hate crime in concert with another and causing great bodily injury. Swanson is being held on $50,000 bail and Gibbs, who was in custody at the time of filing on a probation violation, is being held without bail. Each defendant faces a maximum sentence of 11 years in state prison if convicted. Gibbs is expected to be arraigned today, Thursday, Sep. 4, 2008, at 1:30 p.m. in Department C-57, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana. Swanson is expected to be arraigned tomorrow, Friday, Sep. 5, 2008, in Department C-57. The time is to be determined.
On May 26, 2008, 24-year-old Ryan Honeycutt was having drinks at a bar in Seal Beach with a female friend, Amanda L. When Honeycutt and Amanda L. left the bar, they found that the battery of Honeycutt’s car had died in the parking lot and Amanda L. called Swanson for help. Swanson and Gibbs showed up in the parking lot and jump started the car, and all four went to a convenience store to buy beer before driving back to Amanda L.’s home.
While at Amanda L.’s Seal Beach residence, the group had a conversation during which Honeycutt explained that he was half Salvadorian. Swanson is accused of saying “You mean you’re f***ing El Salvadorian? You’re basically a dirty f***ing Mexican.” Swanson and Gibbs, who both have white supremacist tattoos, are accused of identifying themselves as white supremacists to the victim. When Honeycutt became uncomfortable and began to leave, the defendants are accused of luring him outside and attacking him. They are accused of punching him one time in the head, knocking him unconscious, and stomping on him after he had fallen to the ground. The victim suffered a fractured clavicle, a concussion, and facial lacerations. Swanson and Gibbs are accused of leaving Honeycutt on the ground, returning to the residence, and fleeing the scene by stealing Honeycutt’s car. They are also accused of stealing his keys, wallet, and cell phone.
After Honeycutt regained consciousness, he returned to Amanda L.’s house and she drove him home. The victim then called 9-1-1. Honeycutt’s abandoned car was found three days later in a Long Beach parking lot.
Deputy District Attorney Israel Claustro of the Special Prosecutions Unit is prosecuting this case.