Teen Pleads Guilty to Intimidating ‘Jena 6’ Marchers

CNN, April 26, 2008

A teenager pleaded guilty Friday to a federal hate crime of threatening and intimidating civil rights marchers near Jena, Louisiana, last year by displaying hangman’s nooses from the back of a pickup truck.

Federal authorities announced Friday that Jeremiah Munsen, 18, of Colfax, Louisiana, admitted that he placed two large nooses on his truck on September 20.

They said Munsen, along with an unidentified teen passenger, drove repeatedly past a group of marchers gathered at a bus depot in Alexandria—about 35 miles south of Jena, where the marches took place—as they awaited buses to return them to Tennessee.

I-Reporter Casanova Love, 26, was visiting his family in Louisiana and said he witnessed the event and sent a photograph of the truck to CNN.

“If the police had not stepped in, I fear what might have happened,” Love said.

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“The defendant used a noose to threaten peaceful civil rights marchers who were in Louisiana to rally against racial intolerance,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Grace Chung Becker.

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Munsen, who faces up to a year in prison, will be sentenced at an August 15 hearing.

noose

Scary? Photographer says he was afraid of what would have happened if the police hadn’t stepped in.

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