Monday, May 10, 2010
Hate In America: Mentally Challenged Man Branded
The three white men are accused of forcing the 22-year-old victim from the Navajo Indian reservation into a car April 29, and driving him to an apartment to abuse him. Police say the trio also shaved a swastika into the man's hair and drew degrading words and pictures on his body with permanent marker.
"They held him down and forcibly branded him," Sgt. Robert Perez of the Farmington Police Department said, according to KRQE TV. "He was drawn on with images of hate speech."
The men have been charged with kidnapping and aggravated battery as the FBI reviews the case to determine if it constitutes a hate crime. Prosecutors in Farmington intend to pursue hate crime charges, according to the Associated Press.
"Their claim was that the 22-year-old victim was willing to have himself branded and shaved and written on with some of the hate speech and graphic images that were painted on his body," Perez told KRQE TV. Sanford is in custody, but police are still searching for the other two suspects. The victim, scarred by a hot wire hanger that was used to burn the swastika into his arm, has been returned to his family.
Soures: New York Daily News and The Associated Press