Monday, 15 August 2011

Flash-Mob Attacks at Wis. Fair: Police to File Hate-crimes Charges

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Police in Wisconsin will seek hate-crimes charges against a black teenager who confessed that race hatred motivated his attacks on whites at the Wisconsin State Fair on August 4. And newly released 911 tapes indicate that a black security guard at the fair watched while a black flash mob pulverized a white boy.

According to the Christian Science Monitor, police in West Allis, Wisconsin, will file hate-crimes charges against others as well. But the Monitor’s reporter also suggests that the teenagers might not be to blame for the bedlam that injured 11 people.

Last week, two of Milwaukee’s alderman, both whites, condemned the culture of violence and illegitimacy that is now accepted in the black community. Milwaukee’s Common Council President, Willie Hines, joined them.

And Philadelphia’s Mayor lowered the rhetorical boom on black teenagers who have been rampaging through the City of Brotherly Love.

"Easy Targets"

The teenager told police that his black flash mob targeted whites at the fair. Reported the Monitor, he “confirmed witness statements suggesting that the large group of black teens, who had originally fought among themselves, specifically targeted white people as they spilled out of the large fairgrounds on the outskirts of Milwaukee at closing time. According to the West Allis police, he said he personally picked out white people because they were "easy targets."

The boy is charged with robbery and attempted robbery, the Associated Press reported, also noting that police have recommended hate-crimes charges.

According to the Monitor, that would be something of a first:

While racial motivations have been suspected in several other mob attacks, the recommendations by the West Allis police department appears to be the first time that specific hate charges have been cited in relation to recent attacks. Two similar attacks earlier this year in Milwaukee did not result in hate crime charges against the suspects.

Wisconsin’s state code enhances the penalty for crimes motivated by racial bias. According to the code, a crime is defined as hateful if the suspect

intentionally selects the person against whom the crime … is committed … because of the [suspect’s] belief or perception regarding the race, religion, color, disability, sexual orientation, national origin or ancestry of that person or the owner or occupant of that property, whether or not the actor's belief or perception was correct.

Milwaukee Alderman Willie Hines, who is black, is outraged by the racial attacks and agrees that hate-crimes charges must be filed: "Attacking anyone based on their ethnicity or color means a racial hate crime should be an additional charge,” he said.

911 Tapes: Angry, Confused Dispatchers

The 911 tapes indicate that a black security guard stood by while the black flash mob attacked a white boy. Apparently, the call refers to an attack that Iraq War veteran, Eric, who would not release his last name, described for WTMJ Newsradio. “I saw them grab this white kid who was probably 14 or 15 years old,” he told the station. “They just flung him into the road.”

They just jumped on him and started beating him. They were kicking him. He was on the ground. A girl picked up a construction sign and pushed it over on top of him. They were just running by and kicking him in the face.…

These black kids grabbed this kid off the ground again, and pulled him up over the curb, onto the sidewalk and threw him into the bushes like he was a piece of garbage.

While that was happening, the 911 tapes make clear, the security guard, a woman, watched the action, the City Pages blog reported. “One caller just after 11:30 said he ‘just wanted to make sure somebody got to the kid who was getting, just, pummeled on the side of the road,’” the blog said.

“The African Americans that were beating the hell out of him pulled him up off the sidewalk into the bush,” he says. And then: “And the security guard, the African American lady that was working that gate, her a** needs to be fired, because she didn't do a da** thing. She just stood there and watched.”

The tapes also reveal that a 911 dispatcher in West Allis told one caller that the intersection the caller described as aflame with racial violence was not in West Allis but rather in Milwaukee, and so police would not respond. Then the caller told the dispatcher that Milwaukee’s 911 dispatcher said the intersection was not in Milwaukee but in West Allis.

Other callers reported that black mobs numbering anywhere from 25 to 300 mauled passersby and attacked cars, opening doors to attack the drivers and passengers. And as more and more callers reported the violence, 911 dispatchers grew increasingly testy.

One caller bit back:

Caller: Yeah, there’s a group of African Americans that are walking down 75th Street, going north, that thought it was okay to have a law abiding citizen walking by ... and they just jump me, what?

Dispatcher: Do you need an ambulance, sir?

Caller: No I don't need an ambulance. I'm bleeding but I don't give a s***.

Dispatcher: Do you want an ambulance?

Caller: No I don't want a f**king ambulance. Send some squads, arrest these people.

Dispatcher: We have squads all over the area you're going to have to walk up to an officer and find one.

Caller: Walk up to an officer? I don't see an officer anywhere — what are you talking about?

Dispatcher: We have about 20 squads all around the general area.

Caller:  I mean this is what I gotta go through, I pay taxes and I’m walking down the f***ing street — really? — and this is what the f*** happens, some stupid f***ing black motherf***ers, they think they can just f***ing punch people, really? Take care of this s**t. That's what we pay you for. That’s what our taxes are for.

City Officials Say Enough Is Enough

Last week, Milwaukee aldermen Bob Donovan and Joe Dudzik denounced the cultural decay among blacks in the city. “Let’s face it,” the pair wrote, the flash mobs have “much to do with a deteriorating African American culture in our city. Are large groups of Hispanics or Hmong going out in large mobs and viciously attacking whites? No.”

They also blamed illegitimacy and absentee fathers in the black community:

There are repercussions for the staggering illegitimacy rate in our African American community.

There are repercussions for having little to no positive male involvement in the lives of African American children.

In Philadelphia, Mayor Michael Nutter hammered rampaging black teeagers in a manner reminiscent of comedian Bill Cosby: “You have damaged your own race,” the Washington Times reported that Nutter said. The paper continued,

“Take those God-darn hoodies down, especially in the summer,” Mr. Nutter, the city’s third black mayor, said in an angry lecture aimed at black teens. “Pull your pants up and buy a belt ‘cause no one wants to see your underwear or the crack of your butt.”

“If you walk into somebody’s office with your hair uncombed and a pick in the back, and your shoes untied, and your pants half down, tattoos up and down your arms and on your neck, and you wonder why somebody won’t hire you? They don’t hire you ’cause you look like you’re crazy,” the mayor said.

The Monitor’s report, however, suggests that the violent culture of hip hop and rap are not to blame, and that everyone and everything but the black teenagers themselves are responsible for the attacks:

Opportunistic thrill-seeking and resentment fueled by stark segregation and high unemployment among young black males (39 percent versus 23 percent for white teens) have been cited by sociologists as possible causes for the recent attacks. The attacks have touched off debates in Milwaukee and elsewhere about who bears ultimate responsibility for the incidents: parents or society at large? 

Photo of Michael Nutter: AP Images

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