NM - Hate crime being prosecuted in NM Town

Discussion in 'Crimes in the News' started by believe09, Nov 30, 2010.

  1. believe09

    believe09 Active Member

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    William Hatch, Paul Beebe and Jesse Sanford had just finished their shift at McDonalds when they decided to have a little fun with a mentally disabled Navajo man. They formed a swastika from a wire hanger, heated it on a stove and branded the arm of the man.

    They werent done.

    They shaved a swastika into his hair and wrote all over his body images of white supremacy as well as a graphic depiction of a penis.

    The defendants are the very first to be accused of violating the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act and could face 10 years in prison if convicted. The sentences could be extended to life if the government proves kidnapping occurred.

    They have pled not guilty.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101130/ap_on_re_us/us_swastika_brand

    This is just another race related attack in a community that has a long history of conflict between Caucasians and Navajos. How terribly, terribly sad.
     
  2. Angels_Not_Forgotten

    Angels_Not_Forgotten Anxiously Awaiting a WINNING NFL Season!

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    How disgusting. I hope that justice will be served. :(
     
  3. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    That is heart-breaking, Believe. We have so much more work to do. I'm actually hopeful that McDonald's uses this as an opportunity to reach out. After all, these three monsters were employees and the young victim was a customer. I realize that they weren't on the job but this a "teachable moment". And who among us believe that this is their first act of violence?

    Make sure to read the entire article. The list of hate related crimes in Farmington is truly appalling. I had no idea.
     
  4. GannyP

    GannyP Searching for Truth

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    How awful! I had no idea that much hate was felt towards Native Americans today. Sad.
     
  5. believe09

    believe09 Active Member

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    The first defendant being tried for this crime was found guilty of the assault on a mentally disabled man, which included burning a swastika into the man's arm.

    "AZTEC, N.M. – The first of three defendants accused of branding a swastika into the arm of a mentally disabled Navajo man was convicted Friday of conspiracy to commit aggravated battery."

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110507/ap_on_re_us/us_swastika_brand

    And here is my favorite quote from the defense- :banghead:

    Jurors acquitted Hatch of more serious charges, including kidnapping and aggravated battery causing great bodily harm.
    "It's a win," defense attorney Eric Morrow told the Farmington Daily Times after the verdict. "The emotion in this case is very powerful."

    Really? Wonder if the VICTIM views it as a win? I mean, Hatch participated in a "hate" crime. He was convicted for his role in it. The defendant has not yet faced the federal charges yet. This was simply a conviction in NM. Federal time is hard time. Just sayin.
     
  6. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    I think that Attorney Eric Morrow's statement is reprehensible. There's not a single way to look at this case where anything could be considered a "win". I wish that he'd be reprimanded for that comment. It's heartless.

    I wonder if any group has stepped forward to help the victim have the swastika "brand" removed from his arm. His hair will grow back and cover the head shaving and pen markings on his backside will fade but the brand will linger.....as will the horrid trauma of this attack. Poor man. He was very brave to testify.
     
  7. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Some of the testimony in this trial was outrageous. Kee, bless his heart, did his level best. His disability is identified as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (far more severe than FAE). His testimony was clear at times and contradictory at times. That's very common with people with this disability. They are very concrete but questions have to be posed correctly and in a straight forward fashion. I wouldn't doubt at all that he enjoyed the attention he got initially as he considered the young men friends and then got scared when things got ugly--much like a young child would respond. And note that Hatch smiled at the audience repeatedly. My heart just aches for the victim when I read things like that.

    I found this:

    http://www.daily-times.com/ci_18006006

    "....Hatch told [Detective] Tepfer the drawings were a joke, done as amusement. "To be honest I don't think he saw what was put on him," Hatch said. Hatch didn't have a specific answer to Tepfer's repeated questions as to why the swastika was chosen to brand Kee. "For what it is, it came out nice," Hatch said...."

    and

    "...In dramatic testimony, Hatch's father, BH, Sr., despite his experience with the area's racial issues in the past three decades, said he believed the case was being pushed by the Navajo Nation and the police to make an example out of the three men.
    "Are you embarrassed that your son would do what these three did to a mentally deficient Navajo kid and drew all over him and cut a swastika into the back of his head?" a passionate Deputy District Attorney Paul Wainwright said to the elder Hatch.

    [Paul] Beebe, who awaits trial for the same charges, made a brief appearance in court Thursday as an exhibit in the defense's case. "There is an issue in this case of voluntariness," Chief District Judge John Dean said after ruling Beebe could be presented to show the jury the man's physical size and stature. Wearing a long sleeve black shirt that covered most of his tattoos, including a swastika, Beebe stood before the jury, his hair no longer shaved close to his head but grown out and slicked back...."

    more at link


    And comments here, including how Hatch's father responded to the question above:

    http://www.topix.net/forum/source/farmington-daily-times/TH8J3PMB4OG8HL70V
     
  8. Snick1946

    Snick1946 Well-Known Member

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    Anything at all about McDonald's offering say, funding to any Native American center in Fafrmington? Not that the company had anything to do with this, but you'd think it'd be a healing gesture?
     
  9. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    I've often thought that we need some sort of a "rolling" trauma team that travels to cities and towns where hate crimes have divided and polarized the community. The Southern Poverty Law Center's website has so much wonderful information about their goal of "Teaching Tolerance". Much positive change can be instituted in the schools and spread out from there.

    http://www.splcenter.org/

    http://www.splcenter.org/what-we-do/teaching-tolerance (I love their magazine!!)

    We need a Teaching Tolerance Team. I think Farmington, NM and Cleveland, TX could both highly benefit from some a little help right now. Human beings have a tendency to get entrenched in outdated belief systems and often need a little help crawling out of those trenches and crossing the road to offer a hand instead of a fist.
     

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