Marshak courses for children forward this error screen to 85. Most people are obviously upset when people hatefully target others for their characteristics.
What is also upsetting is when people fake crimes, whether it’s to draw attention to themselves, redirect attention from a bad situation, or to advance some social agenda. When people fake hate crimes, it increases paranoia, expends the resources of law enforcement, and weakens the social bonds within the community. The Louisiana State Police received an urgent telephone call on October 21, 2012 from Sharmeka Moffitt, a 20-year-old Winnsboro woman. The young woman claimed that racially indeterminate men wearing white hoods had doused her with flammable liquid and set her ablaze at a local park near a walking trail.
Social media accounts spread the news of the alleged attack. The NAACP got word of the incident, and local police invited the FBI to investigate the case. Otis Chisley, the president of the local branch of the NAACP, said that he would wait for more facts before coming to a conclusion about what happened. However, he mentioned that Klan activity, although clandestine, was still a problem in Louisiana. Kevin Cobb, the local sheriff, said that he would seek justice. Later, after two days of investigation, the local, state, and federal agencies determined the perpetrator of the vicious attack: Sharmeka Moffitt. Winnsboro Police Chief Lester Thomas revealed that the authorities had found a lighter and bottle of lighter fluid with her fingerprints on them.
Moffitt failed to reveal her motive. Later, police arrested her on charges of false reporting and terrorizing. Although she could face up to 25 years in prison, probation is more likely because she was a first-time offender. Cristel Conklin and Aimee Whitchurch were a lesbian couple who had been living in their Parker, Colorado condo for half a year, ostensibly without any trouble.
The next night, the threats continued when they found a noose on the doorstep. The HOA had accused them of not cleaning up their dogs’ feces. The couple disagreed with the HOA’s assertions. Earlier, local news had reported about the struggle between the couple and the HOA and, during an interview with Conklin, the news had identified her as a lesbian. After making complaints to the HOA about the hateful graffiti, they claimed that someone had keyed their car and dumped dog feces in their yard, possibly in retaliation.
The president of the HOA did put primer over the red graffiti, but the couple claimed that he did a poor job which shows that the HOA didn’t care that people had targeted them. The FBI conducted a thorough investigation. They tested for paint residue on the couple’s palms and they asked them to take a lie detector test. After getting witness statements, the FBI determined that the couple spray-painted the words themselves. The police charged them with criminal mischief and false reporting. It wasn’t any of the planned Black History Month celebrations, but it was a person creating terror across the campus in a series of escalating incidents. It began on a Wednesday when a group of students found a bunch of rubber bands tied together.
Some people said the rubber bands looked like they formed the shape of a noose. N——rs will die in 2 days. At the bottoms of the fliers, the perpetrator had written 13 names of black students. It ended up being Khalilah Ford, a black student, who created the list. She thus decided to send a hoax letter to another black student hoping to draw further attention. It isn’t clear whether the noose incidents were actually motivated by hate, another hoax, or even if the objects were supposed to represent nooses.
I don’t think these nooses are what people would picture. How did the detectives realize Ford was behind the hoax? Her name was the only name correctly spelled on the list. The police charged her with disorderly conduct and obstructing an officer.
Because of her actions, the university immediately suspended her. Embarrassed, Ford did not even try to fight the university’s action and withdrew from the university. Trinity International University sent Latino and black students off-campus to an undisclosed location in April 2005. The administration didn’t know when or if the students would return to campus housing. Eerily, the unknown person sent the third letter around April 20, the anniversaries of Hitler’s birthday, the Oklahoma City bombing, and the Columbine school shootings.