A 25-year-old Anaheim man and self-proclaimed “incel” is scheduled to be arraigned next month on multiple hate crime charges for allegedly pepper spraying three women and a man in Costa Mesa.

Johnny Deven Young was charged May 4 with two separate attacks on Nov. 21, 2021 and April 17 of this year, according to court records. He was arrested Sept. 5 in San Mateo County and made his first appearance in court on the charges Monday, according to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.

Young is charged with four counts of assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury, four counts of illegal use of tear gas, all felonies, and four misdemeanor counts of violation of civil rights. He also faces sentencing enhancements for hate crime and personal use of a deadly weapon.

Young faces up to 13 years in prison if convicted at trial. He has a prior misdemeanor hate crime conviction in Nevada, according to prosecutors.

Prosecutors said Young is a self-proclaimed “incel,” meaning he is part of an online community of men who are involuntarily celibate and prone to misogyny because they do not feel they are attractive to women.

Prosecutors said the male victim attempted to stop one of Young’s alleged assaults after several videos showing the attacks were circulated on YouTube.

“‘No one should have to live in fear that they could be indiscriminately attacked and then publicly humiliated on the Internet because of their gender,” Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer said. “This behavior is disgusting and the celebration of this behavior by like-minded individuals is completely unacceptable. These charges send a very strong message to that entire community that we will not tolerate violence against women in any form.”

This article is a part of a series of articles for Our Weekly’s #StopTheHate campaign and is supported in whole or part by funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library. #NoPlaceForHateCA, #StopAAPIHate, #CaliforniaForAll.

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