Groups Call on State’s Attorney to Consider Hate Crime Charges
(Baltimore, MD, 10/10/19) - Today, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Caucus of African-American Leaders, and the Anne Arundel County Branch of the NAACP joined to strongly condemn a racist effigy discovered hanging on a noose from a tree on the property of a former Anne Arundel County Councilman yesterday. The groups are calling on the state’s attorney’s office to consider hate crime charges against the adult male perpetrator of the incident.
The property was marked with “No Trespassing” signs. The suspect, who has been released from police custody without charges, did not have permission to be on the property.
“History is replete with white supremacist organizations that used effigies and real human beings to terrorize African Americans,” said Caucus of African-American Leaders President Carl Snowden. “Nooses, like swastikas, symbolize a dark part of history. It is not to be celebrated in any way.”
“Disturbing incidents like this evoke the long history of racial trauma and terror against communities of color in our country,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry. “While we appreciate law enforcement working swiftly to determine the identity of the suspect in this case, we stress the need for appropriate action and education in order to discourage these type of hateful and hurtful actions in the future.”
“The NAACP calls on the County Executive Stewart Pittman and Mayor Gavin Buckley to develop a plan to curtail racist activities in the county and city,” said President of the Anne Arundel County Branch NAACP Jacqueline Boone Allsup. “Specifically, they should instruct their respective Human Relations Commission to address this situation.”
Earlier this year, in August, a noose was reported at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis.
SEE: Naval Academy investigating report of noose
Last year, Maryland lawmakers approved a bill to expand the scope of hate crime law to include groups of people that can be afflicted by racially motivated crimes.
SEE: Maryland lawmakers approve changes to hate crime laws, overdose report
Earlier this week, CAIR condemned stickers reported on the campus of Towson University boasting the emblem of a white nationalist group, Patriot Front.
Patriot Front, which was formed after the deadly white supremacist attacks in Charlottesville, has been described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a white nationalist hate group that "rehabilitated the explicitly fascist agenda of Vanguard America with garish patriotism.”
SEE: CAIR Condemns White Nationalist Symbols Discovered on University Campus in Maryland, Urges Campus Officials to Model Inclusivity
The civil rights organization was alerted to the stickers by Muslim students on campus, and has reported an uptick in hate crimes and bias incidents targeting many minority communities in recent years.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.
CONTACT: CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry, email@example.com, 410-971-6062; Caucus of African-American Leaders President Carl Snowden, 443 871 5656