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Iowa Police Investigating Cross-Burning Hate Crime Done by ‘Cowards’

Wikipedia Commons

Wikipedia Commons

Police in Dubuque, Iowa are investigating a hate crime that occurred in a Black neighborhood Wednesday morning. Two burned crosses were discovered outside of a home in the area.

KWWL reports that between 4 and 5 a.m., cops responded to a call that something was burning in a Washington Street neighborhood. They didn’t find anything at the time, but later that morning police learned about burned items in the same location. Authorities say they found “two crudely constructed items that appeared to be crosses damaged by fire.”

The community is disturbed by the hate crime.

“In 2016, I’m surprised, because that’s like a cheap shot,” Le-Shaun Evans said to KWWL. “I mean, I don’t have words to describe it. I really am shocked.”

Residents say they don’t necessarily feel threatened, but they are concerned about what the act says to children.

“I have kids around here,” Kelton Williams, a long-time Dubuque resident told the station. “And I try to teach them as far as race goes, that everybody is supposed to get along. And when something like this happens, it’s like a fall back for me as a parent. You know, saying this kind of stuff happens and how to react from it.”

Evans said the community is loving and that the cross-burning is cowardly.

“We’re trying to be closer together and be more of a family people instead of putting barriers in between us. And that’s what it does,” Evans said to the news crew.

Jeffrey Bullock, president of the University of Dubuque, sent an email to campus about what happened. He called the incident an “awful act of bigotry” and added, “I am proud to be a part of a community where this kind of behavior is confronted head-on, even while I am ashamed at the prospect of having to write this letter in the first place.”

This is not the first hate crime that the Iowa town has dealt with. In 1991, The Los Angeles Times reports Dubuque began a task force to bring more African-Americans to the area. The initiative was launched to shed the perception that the city was a racist community. Ten crosses were burned that year over integration.

What people are saying

One thought on “Iowa Police Investigating Cross-Burning Hate Crime Done by ‘Cowards’

  1. Burning crosses is done as a threat stepping on a flag isn't. Odd you only addressed Black people who step on flags when I see waaaaaaaay more White people and Hispanics doing that and also burning them then I see Black people do. I guess they get a pass huh!

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