AP NEWS

Black Georgia lawmakers to push for state hate crimes law

November 21, 2019

ATLANTA (AP) — Black Georgia lawmakers say they will push for a state hate crimes law after a white 16-year-old girl was accused of plotting to attack black churchgoers.

The Georgia Legislative Black Caucus said Thursday that the group will work for passage of a state hate crimes bill that protects civil rights.

The U.S. Department of Justice says Georgia is one of only four states without a hate crimes law. The others are South Carolina, Arkansas and Wyoming.

Gainesville, Georgia, police say the girl had collected several kitchen knives and scouted out the predominantly black Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Police say the plot came to light last week, when Gainesville High School students told administrators the girl had a notebook with detailed plans to ambush churchgoers as they worshipped.