WASHINGTON – Joshua Wall, 20, pleaded guilty today in federal court in Baltimore for his involvement in hanging a dead raccoon from a noose on the porch of an African-American family.
Wall pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to deprive a person of civil rights, and admitted that in April 2010, he and four co-conspirators agreed on a plan to hang a dead raccoon from a noose on the porch of an African-American family to frighten the family and to interfere with their housing rights. Wall claimed that two of his co-conspirators drove around until they found a dead raccoon and made the noose to put around the raccoon’s neck. Wall and two of the co-conspirators hung the raccoon on the porch of the home in the middle of the night.
“Acts of hate to intimidate someone because of their race still occur in this day and will not be tolerated by the Justice Department,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “The Justice Department will vigorously prosecute anyone that violates our nation’s civil rights laws.”
Sentencing for Wall is scheduled for Aug. 17, 2012. He faces up to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.
This investigation, which is continuing, is being handled by the FBI, and prosecuted by the Civil Rights Division and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland.