That escalated quickly.
Timothy Warren, a FedEx driver in Portland, Oregon, was finishing out his day when Joseph Magnuson, a man living in a van by a park nearby, screamed at him to slow down on a late September day.
According to a recent piece in The Washington Post, Warren, who was driving at a normal speed per numerous witness accounts, stepped out of his vehicle to explain to Magnuson that he was just trying to close out and go home. Magnuson then berated Warren, a black man, with racial slurs “over and over again,” and swung at him. Warren swung back, placing a single punch above Magnuson’s left eye that knocked him out cold. He died later that evening.
Prosecutors did not charge Warren, as he was clearly acting in self-defense and was well within his legal right to challenge Magnuson’s “racist vitriol.” Medical examiners later determined the punch itself was not lethal and that Magnuson’s death from the fall was due to “extremely poor health.”
According to The Oregonian, Magnuson’s death was Portland’s fourth homicide of the year that resulted from self-defense. Three of the people defending themselves in those incidents were attacked while working.