An incident that some Claremont, N.H., White teens are calling an accident almost killed an 8-year old biracial boy. One or more of them allegedly tied a rope around the boy’s neck and hung him from a tree. Authorities are refusing to release any information on the alleged hate crime because the suspects are minors, but family and local activists say they should do more to get justice for the victim.
Here’s What Happened
The horrific attack took place on Aug. 28. Lorrie Slattery, the little boy’s grandmother, told the Valley News that her grandson had been taunted, called “racial epithets,” and had been hit in the legs with sticks and rocks by the group of teens. Slattery was told by the victim’s 11-year old sister and other children playing in the same yard that at least one of the teams climbed atop a picnic table and reached for a rope that was once part of a tire swing.
“The (teenagers) said, ‘Look at this,’ supposedly putting the rope around their necks,” Slattery said. “One boy said to (her grandson), ‘Let’s do this,’ and then pushed him off the picnic table and hung him.”
Everyone please repost this. This is my neighbors grandson, this just upsets me so much
No One Is Talking
Slattery said the attack was intentional and racially-motivated. The boy was left swinging by his neck and had to free himself. And yet, Claremont Police Chief Mark Chase has refused to discuss the case at all. New Hampshire law prohibits the release of juvenile court proceedings and related investigations.
“These people need to be protected,” Chase said.
But no one protected the little boy that day. Will he get justice? While the 8-year old has returned to school, he won’t speak of the incident and his mother, Cassandra Merlin, has been traumatized by the ordeal.
After Merlin drove him to the emergency room immediately following the incident, he had to be airlifted to Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center for treatment. He suffered rope burns to his neck, but the emotional scars are deep-seeded. Nevertheless, Chase seems to be more concerned about protecting the futures of the suspects.
“We don’t want things to follow kids throughout their life,” Chase said.
— Projects 2 Pinnacle (@JUSSASUB) September 11, 2017
Will Justice Be Served?
‘Things?’ But we’re talking about a lynching here. Based on what Merlin has been told by authorities, the penalty given to the 14-year old who pushed her son off that table will likely not fit the crime.
“What they told me was they are looking to give him juvenile probation, which in my eyes isn’t enough,” Merlin told Revere Press. “I don’t think the police department understands the severity of what happened to my son.”
This is likely the reason why the City of Claremont is trying to keep this incident under wraps. But don’t think that their efforts are going unnoticed.
“I am upset and saddened and angered about how the police and city officials have chosen to play this,” said Kendra Colburn of Showing Up for Racial Justice. “(They) all seem like they do not want media attention on this story, and I am concerned that we can’t change what we don’t know about or refuse to look at.”
RESPONSE TO CLAREMONT RACIST ATTACK!There will be a prayer vigil organized by local faith communities TUESDAY,…
Colburn should be concerned. Chief Chase has no intentions of releasing any details about this case even if they conclude that it was racially-motivated. In the interest of ‘protecting’ all the children involved, perhaps he should turn his attention to the victim. This event will follow him for the rest of his life whether the people who did this to him are punished or not.