Lynching Charge Against Black Activist in California Dropped
California prosecutors dropped lynching charges today against 20-year-old Black Lives Matter activist Maile Mae Hampton, the Guardian reports. In January, Hampton was accused of interfering with the arrest of another activist.
According to the Guardian, California’s 1933 lynching law was intended to prevent mobs from removing people from police custody. However: “The statute has long been used against protesters as well and refers to any ‘riotous conduct aimed at freeing a person’ from police, according to court documents. It carries the possibility of four years in jail.”
While they dropped the lynching charge—a felony—prosecutors in Sacramento presented an amended complaint against Hampton: a misdemeanor charge of “interference with a peace officer in the performance of his/her duties.”
“I am very surprised that Sacramento chose to do the right thing, but happily surprised,” Hampton said outside the courthouse today. “That could have straight-up ruined my life.”
Hampton posted photographs to Twitter of herself participating in an anti-police brutality demonstration last night.
#Sacramento #FreddieGray #Baltimore pic.twitter.com/DfOUAOWie4April 30, 2015
Pictures from last nights protest, more to come. #Baltimore #FreddieGray #Sacramento pic.twitter.com/onciiKrgIIApril 30, 2015
Couples that fight against the capitalist system together, stay together #Baltimore #FreddieGray pic.twitter.com/3nrgXkGJKkApril 30, 2015
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