When is a Hate Crime Not a Hate Crime? - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/11/04

When is a Hate Crime Not a Hate Crime?

Last Sunday there was no doubt in Mohamed El-Moctar's mind about what had happened to his mosque. A shattered window, ransacked office, racial slurs on the walls.

"Do you think it was a hate crime?," asked NewsChannel 11. "Yes, it was a hate crime," he replied.

Four days later the LPD had good news, sort of. Four Hispanic juveniles arrested, ages 13 to 15, charged with burglary, but as to a hate crime? A mixed message. "The investigation so far has indicated to us that this is not a hate crime," said Assistant LPD Chief Thomas Esparza. But, just minutes later. "Don't get me wrong. This is a hateful crime. It was mean, it was mean spirited, it was hateful," he said.

What gives? The letter of the law. Two major factors necessary in order to be considered a hate crime are age and affiliation. Juveniles are considered too young, capable of rehabilitation. And they need to be part of a group, known for hateful acts, i.e.. the KKK or Hell's Angels.

"What do you think? They're not going to charge them with a hate crime?," asked NewsChanel 11 of El-Moctar. "What is important is that it is a hateful crime. Is legally a hate crime or not, that is not the most important thing," he smiled.

A gracious response from a religious leader seeking to move on, despite a second insult from the law. Last weekend as he sat in his demolished office he distinguished between the physical damage and the slurs on the wall. "It is not the action itself, it's what the action says," he said.

Thursday, the law said volumes with its lack of action.

  • Local News on KCBD.comNewsMore>>

  • Earthquake dims stylish nightlife in Mexico City district

    Earthquake dims stylish nightlife in Mexico City district

    Saturday, September 23 2017 12:36 AM EDT2017-09-23 04:36:18 GMT
    Saturday, September 23 2017 5:27 AM EDT2017-09-23 09:27:15 GMT

    In the stylish Condesa neighborhood young revelers typically spill out from dimly lit bars and restaurants on a Friday night. But the first weekend since the 7.1-magnitude earthquake toppled buildings just blocks away began on a somber note.

    In the stylish Condesa neighborhood young revelers typically spill out from dimly lit bars and restaurants on a Friday night. But the first weekend since the 7.1-magnitude earthquake toppled buildings just blocks away began on a somber note.

  • Public shaming likely but GOP wary of new laws after Equifax

    Public shaming likely but GOP wary of new laws after Equifax

    Friday, September 22 2017 3:48 AM EDT2017-09-22 07:48:03 GMT
    Saturday, September 23 2017 5:06 AM EDT2017-09-23 09:06:45 GMT
    Prospects are good for a public shaming in the Equifax data breach, but it's unlikely Congress will institute sweeping new regulations after hackers accessed the personal information of an estimated 143 million...
    Prospects are good for a public shaming in the Equifax data breach, but it's unlikely Congress will institute sweeping new regulations after hackers accessed the personal information of an estimated 143 million Americans.
  • US beefs up NKorea sanctions, Kim Jong Un insults Trump,

    US beefs up NKorea sanctions, Kim Jong Un insults Trump,

    Thursday, September 21 2017 10:25 AM EDT2017-09-21 14:25:57 GMT
    Saturday, September 23 2017 5:06 AM EDT2017-09-23 09:06:17 GMT
    (AP Photo/Evan Vucci). President Donald Trump speaks at a meeting with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani at the Palace Hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017, in New York.(AP Photo/Evan Vucci). President Donald Trump speaks at a meeting with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani at the Palace Hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017, in New York.

    President Donald Trump says the U.S. will impose additional sanctions on North Korea over the communist country's nuclear weapons buildup.

    President Donald Trump says the U.S. will impose additional sanctions on North Korea over the communist country's nuclear weapons buildup.

Powered by Frankly