Friday, April 22, 2016

Dubuque, IA: NAACP Demanding Answers Following Report of Cross Burning

There were reports last week of cross burnings at the intersection of 22nd and Washington streets in Dubuque, IA:
Police were notified again around 9:30 a.m. of burned objects in the same area. They found what appeared to be two crosses damaged by fire. Authorities are now investigating the incident as a possible hate crime. Dubuque Police Chief Mark Dalsing says the crosses were in an area fenced off due to a construction project.
Nobody was charged in connection to the incident, but it was being investigated as a possible hate crime.

Now WQAD is reporting that local activists have stepped forward with demands for answers about this incident:
Thursday, Members of the NAACP chapter in Dubuque held a press conference. They say they want to stop hate crimes from happening in the future. "We need be proactive not reactive," said president, Anthony Allen. 

Allen says the group plans to take several steps to prevent any hate crimes from happening. He wants to have an opened dialogue about race with community members and in schools, "We need to begin having our relationship in talking about harsh topics with our children." 

The group is also demanding that law enforcement give them concrete details by Friday, April 22nd, at 3 p.m. If there's no update given by the deadline, the Dubuque NAACP chapter says they will reach out to the Department of Justice and the FBI to ask for assistance in investigating the case.
Dubuque suffered from a series of 14 cross burnings between 1988 and 1993. The incident on 04/13/16 was the first since 1993.

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