FACEBOOK

8-Year-Old Boy Was Hung from Noose After Being Called Racial Slurs Family Says

New Hampshire state prosecutors are now involved in a Claremont police investigation of a biracial 8-year-old boy who was allegedly called racial slurs by teens, and pushed off of a picnic table with a noose tied around his neck.


Gov. Chris Sununu issued astatement Tuesday announcing the attorney general’s office’s involvement and said he expects that “local and state authorities will investigate appropriately.”

“Hatred and bigotry will not be tolerated in New Hampshire,” Sununu said.

On Aug. 28, at approximately 5 p.m., the 8-year-old and a group of teenagers were playing in a neighborhood yard, Lorrie Slattery, the boy’s grandmother, toldValley News. Slattery said the teens started calling her grandson racial slurs while tossing rocks and sticks at his legs.She said the teens then decided to stand on top of a picnic table and take a rope that was part of a tire swing.

Slattery toldNewsweekthe teens, who she indicated arewhite, lured her grandson to put the rope around his neck.

“The 14-year-olds were saying ‘Oh look at us,’ and putting the rope around their necks, and then they said to my grandson, ‘Here, you do it.’

“And he’s 8 years old and he put that rope around his neck. And the boys said, ‘A-ha!’ and shoved him off the table. They did a scare and pushed him at the same time, and that’s when my grandson was hung.”

No adults were in the yard at the time. Slattery received information about the incident from her grandson and his 11-year-old sister, who was present at the time.

When the boy was able to free himself from the rope, his sister ran to their mother, Cassandra Merlin,and he wasrushed to a local hospital. He was then airlifted to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center and treated for his injuries.

Hospital personnel said that before the young boy was able to remove the rope, he swung back and forth by his neck three times, according to Valley News. None of the teens came to his aid, Slattery said.

He did not suffer any internal injuries.

“I think he had a guardian angel,” Slattery said.

On the evening of Aug. 28, the victim’s uncle posted a photo onFacebookof the 8-year-old’s bruised neck from rope burns. He wrote in the post:

“When my sister calls me when something is wrong I feel it in my bones before ever picking up the phone. Tonight I was spot on. My nephew was hung from a tree by a 14 year old who claims ‘It was an accident.’ I don’t care what kind of excuse this teenager has but you DO NOT play with somebody’s life.”

The victim’s family said the investigation by the local police department had been slow moving, until the photo went viral.

“Now they’re investigating,” said Slattery told Newsweek. “On the day it happened, the police officer went around and spoke to the boy [believed to be the ringleader] and then came back to my daughter and said, ‘the child said it was an accident; there’s nothing we can do.’

“It was the media who opened their eyes and got them to do an investigation.”

Claremont Police Chief Mark Chase said he disagrees with Slattery’s statements.

“All I can really confirm is that we sent officers to the initial investigation,” Chase told Newsweek. “We have line-level officers that respond initially. When it’s a serious investigation, we assign it to our criminal investigation. I assigned a regular police officer, we got the facts, and then the detectives took over immediately. From the get-go, we’ve believed this was a serious incident. I know that as the police department, we’ve regarded it as serious.”

According to the Valley News, Chase said on Sept. 7 that he was constrained in regard to providing information on the incident as it involved juveniles.

He also referred to the actions of those involved as “mistakes.”

“Mistakes they make as a young child should not have to follow them for the rest of their life,”Chase said.

Following Sununu’s involvement in the case, andtwo weeks after the victim’s family reported the alleged racial incident, on Tuesday afternoon Chaseissued apress release,obtained by the Valley News. For the first time, a definitive age range for the youth involved was provided.

“Claremont police detectives assigned to this case are taking all steps possible to investigate the incident,” Chase said. “The investigation principally revolves around the conduct of people who are 14 years of age or younger.”

Theattorney general’s office alsoannounced Tuesdaythat the New Hampshire Department of Justice would be reviewing the incident. And, “to the extent that there is any credible information that this incident constituted a hate crime or a civil rights violation under New Hampshire law, the office is prepared to take any and all appropriate action.”

On Tuesday night, about 100 people gathered in downtown Claremont, N.H., for a vigil in response to the possible hate crime.

According toNew Hampshire Public Radio,when the organizer, Rebecca MacKenzie, began to introduce the night’s first speaker, “she was interrupted by a white man,driving by and yelling from his truck.”

He screamed, “All lives matter,” in response to “Black Lives Matter” signs at the vigil.

“Stop making it about race,” the man yelled.

“Sir, come over to our vigil,”MacKenzie said.

But the man drove away.

Faith leaders, city officials and the police chief spoke at the vigil.

Readmore news @ DiversityInc.com

Latest News

Abraham Lincoln High School

San Francisco School Board Forced to Abandon Controversial Plan to Rename Schools Honoring Historic Figures

The San Francisco Unified School District Board of Education drew nationwide attention earlier this year over its announcement to change the name of 44 schools “named after figures with disputed historical relevance.” And now, following widespread public condemnation and a vote of members, the board has decided it will no…

Park Cannon

Prosecutors Drop Charges Against Park Cannon, Georgia Representative Arrested For Protesting State’s New Racist Voter Restriction Laws

Reaction to Georgia’s restrictive and anti-Black voter disenfranchisement policies continues to stir up controversy. Major League Baseball pulled their wildly popular 2021 All-Star Game from Atlanta and moved it to Denver to show their disappointment with the decision. Georgia-based companies like Delta and Coca-Cola have also announced their disapproval of…

Dow Receives Five 2021 Manufacturing Leadership Awards

Originally published at corporate.dow.com. Dow ranked No. 22 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020.   Dow has been recognized with five Manufacturing Leadership Awards by the Manufacturing Leadership Council, a division of the National Association of Manufacturers. The awards are given to individuals and projects…

Dow Wins With Product Performance and Sustainability at the Leading 2021 Ringier Technology Innovation Awards

Originally published at corporate.dow.com. Dow ranked No. 22 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020.   Dow clinched two notable product wins for superior performance and wide application at the 2021 Ringier Technology Innovation Awards in the Plastics Raw Materials & Additives category: Dow’s Post-Consumer Recycled…

BASF Presents Roadmap to Climate Neutrality

Originally published at basf.com. BASF ranked No. 14 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020.   BASF is setting itself even more ambitious goals on its journey to climate neutrality and wants to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. Based on the most recent progress in developing…