FBI investigating attempted lynching of Black Indiana activist
A man alleged to be trespassing was attacked by a group of white males
The FBI announced they are stepping in to conduct a probe after a civil rights activist told local authorities that a group of white men in southern Indiana lake had attempted to lynch him.
According to The Guardian, alleged victim Vauhxx Booker, who is Black and an active member of the Monroe county human rights commission, said that over the Fourth of July weekend he was assaulted by a group of men who pinned him against a tree, shouted racial slurs and threatened to “get a noose” at Monroe Lake near Bloomington.
The FBI is now investigating the suspected hate crime after one of Booker’s acquaintances captured most of the incident on a cellphone video that shows the 36-year-old on all fours while being held down by a white man. Witnesses can also be heard in the background shouting for him to be released.
“The FBI is investigating. We have no further comment,” spokeswoman Chris Bavender told the Associated Press on Tuesday.
Booker’s attorney, Katharine Liell, shared that the agents were already interviewing witnesses and that her team expected the bureau to make charging decisions soon.
“We want this investigated as a hate crime. It was clearly racially motivated,” Liell said. “We will continue our quest every day until some justice is served.”
Her client is also encouraged by the involvement of the federal agency, noting, “I’m sad that this happened, honestly. I just wanted to have a good time with some friends.”
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