Kenyatta Mitchell, 23, was ordered held on $75,000 bail.
The defendant is also charged with a misdemeanor hate crime and misdemeanor giving false information to officers.
Mitchell was arrested Saturday in Lemon Grove after allegedly punching a man who was organizing a San Diego County torch relay promoting equality for gays and lesbians. The rally also was in protest of Proposition 8.
The victim suffered minor injuries, said Deputy District Attorney Oscar Garcia.
Judge Charles Ervin ordered Mitchell to return to court June 18 for a readiness conference and June 22 for a preliminary hearing.