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Press Release

Restitution Ordered in Jackson, Mississippi, Hate Crime Case Involving Death of James Craig Anderson

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

The Justice Department announced today that U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves of the Southern District of Mississippi ordered restitution in the amount of $840,000 to be paid the estate of James Craig Anderson in the cases of defendants Deryl Paul Dedmon, 23; John Aaron Rice, 23; Dylan Wade Butler, 24; and William Kirk Montgomery, 26.

In 2012, Dedmon, Rice, Butler and Montgomery were convicted of violating the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act for their participation in the conspiracy and racially-motivated attack on Anderson that resulted in his death.  The assault of Anderson was the last in a series of violent attacks by the defendants and their six co-conspirators, in which they physically assaulted vulnerable African-Americans in and around Jackson, Mississippi.  The defendants and six other co-conspirators specifically targeted African Americans they believed to be homeless or under the influence of alcohol because they believed that such individuals would be less resistant and less likely to report an assault. 

On June 26, 2011, Dedmon, Rice, Butler, Montgomery and three of their co-conspirators targeted Anderson, who was alone and defenseless in the parking lot of the Metro Inn Motel in Jackson.  Rice and Dedmon beat Anderson, and then Dedmon used his Ford F-250 truck to fatally strike Anderson.

Judge Reeves previously sentenced Dedmon to serve 50 years in prison, Montgomery to serve over 19 years in prison, Rice to serve over 18 years in prison and Butler to serve seven years in prison.  The amount of restitution imposed accounts for the estimated lost future wages that Anderson would have accumulated and used to support his family had he not been killed in 2011. 

“When these defendants committed this brutal hate crime they not only took a man’s life, they also hurt a family,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.  “Although no amount of money will ever be able to account for the true value of James Craig Anderson’s life, we hope that this restitution will help ease the burden on his family.”

This case was investigated by the FBI’s Jackson Division.  It is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney Sheldon L. Beer and Acting Chief Paige Fitzgerald of the Civil Rights Division’s Criminal Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Glenda R. Haynes of the Southern District of Mississippi.

Updated August 10, 2016

Civil Rights
Hate Crimes
Press Release Number: 16-232