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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 12187
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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I am writing to ask about

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Dear Sir or Madam,
I am writing to ask for advice about an incident happened to me this afternoon.
I was walking on the street towards a Starbucks when a pedestrian walked towards me. I said 'sorry' when I walked past him to enter the Starbucks (he was at the side that is closer), and he stared at me and shouted 'Nuts!' when I was about to enter the door.
I keep reviewing the situation, trying to figure out why. My possible answers are that 1) He got me wrong and thought my 'sorry' was something offensive. The street was noisy; 2) I have a habit of putting a hand in front of me to indicate my direction when in a crowd. He might misinterpretted this as something offensive? 3) This is a verbal abuse, and that could be a possiblity because I am Chinese.
I am wondering what I could do, because I don't want to be accused of doing something offensive, but also don't want to tolerate any abuse. Could he accuse me of anything? Shall I report this to the police if this qualifies as a 'hate crime'?
Many thanks,
Thank you for your question.
It's difficult to judge what was going on. Possibly the person thought you had cut him off or something and he was displeased. However, I don't think you should take it further unless you are sure of your facts and can in fact identify who the person is. Without ID you can't take it further at all. I would put it down to experience.
I hope this helps. Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


Thank you very much for your prompt reply! Your guess makes a good explanation.

There is only a minor confusion: I assume that no need to 'take it further unless you are sure of your facts and can in fact identify who the person is' refers to ME reporting this as an abuse to the police? I believe that there is also nothing he could accuse me of, even if he thinks I offended him in some way?

Thanks for your time,


That is exactly what I meant. You have done nothing wrong and he can't accuse you of anything.
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