Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Prosecutor declines to charge Grosse Pointe Park man for displaying KKK flag, saying it's not a crime

Posted By on Tue, Mar 2, 2021 at 10:31 AM

click to enlarge Ku Klux Klan flag displayed in Grosse Pointe Park home. - DEADLINE DETROIT
  • Deadline Detroit
  • Ku Klux Klan flag displayed in Grosse Pointe Park home.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy has declined to charge a Grosse Pointe Park man for displaying a Ku Klux Klan flag in a side window facing his Black neighbor’s home.

The 31-year-old man said he erected the flag in response to his neighbor JeDonna Matthews Dinges, who is Black, installing a surveillance camera on her window sill, which was aimed at the sidewalk between her home and her neighbor’s house. Dinges said she installed the camera after she found a full gasoline can in her trash receptacle.



Although the flag is abhorrent, Worthy said, displaying it is not a crime.

“There is absolutely no question that what happened to Ms. Dinges was despicable, traumatizing, and completely unacceptable,” Worthy said in a statement. "But, very unfortunately in my view, not a crime. The KKK flag, while intending to be visible to Ms. Dinges, was hanging inside of her neighbor’s house.”

Worthy noted that Michigan’s ethnic intimidation law “requires that there must be physical contact, damage, destruction, defacement of property, or threats to do so.” She called on state lawmakers to strengthen the law.

“We could not even begin to charge Ethnic Intimidation under current Michigan law,” Worthy said. “I strongly encourage the Michigan Legislature to look, revise, and create laws to protect citizens from this kind of horrible conduct.”

Hundreds of people protested in Grosse Pointe Park last month in solidarity with Dinges.

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