News Roundup for August 18, 2011

A federal jury in Mobile, Ala., convicted a white supremacist on firearm and drug offenses today. It took the jury about an hour to find Daniel Dwight Brown guilty of the charges, for which he faces at least 15 years in prison. Brown is a self-avowed member of the neo-Nazi Aryan Brotherhood and is currently a suspect in a shooting death in March.

Police in Oregon are investigating an assault on a gay man by his neighbor in Aloha, Ore. The victim alleges that his neighbor unexpectedly attacked him while using anti-gay slurs while he was working in his home office. The attacker is currently under arrest, and police are still pinpointing the exact motive of the suspect.

Houston police are continuing to push for hate crime charges to be brought against four self-proclaimed white supremacists for beating an African-American man. The Harris County District Attorney’s Office is claiming that certain misdemeanor charges cannot be enhanced, despite the suspects’ long rap sheets and motive. As recently as 2009, a grand jury in Texas refused to allow hate crime charges for three white men accused of attacking a black ice cream vender because of his race.

The attorney for a man accused of burning a cross in front of the home of an African American is asking that a hate crime charge be dropped due to his ethnicity. William Soto is among four suspects in the cross burning that took place in Arroyo Grande, Calif. Soto’s lawyer says the fact that he is Filipino-American proves that racism was not a motivation for the crime.

A man in Union City, Calif., claims he was the victim of a hate crime on Monday. According to police, 10 to 12 teens attempted to rob the victim, then hit him with sticks while shouting anti-gay slurs. The man did not sustain serious injuries.