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Former KKK Member Charged With Alabama Cross Burning

A former member of the Ku Klux Klan has been charged with burning a cross in a predominantly black Alabama neighborhood. Steven Joshua Dinkle was arrested on Wednesday over a 2009 incident in which he burned a cross in a largely black Ozark neighborhood as a means of intimidating residents. He’s also being charged with conspiring to violate housing rights, criminally interfering with housing rights, using a fire to commit a felony and obstruction of justice.

A Facebook page belonging to Dinkle also has a photo of him displaying a Klan tattoo. He was the exalted Cyclops of a KKK chapter in Ozark at one point, but is no longer a member of that organization. His mother, Pamela Morris, is also being charged with committing perjury before a grand jury that investigated the case.

The federal complaint reports that Dinkle and an accomplice drove to the Johntown Road area of Ozark and doused a six-foot cross with gasoline before lighting it. They also wrapped the cross in blue jeans and towels to help keep the flame going. Dinkle then reportedly lied to both the state and federal investigators about knowing the man who was actually his superior within the organization and provided a fake alibi

Morris also lied to state and federal investigators by denying her involvement with the KKK, despite being the treasurer for the Ozark chapter, as well as her son’s involvement in the cross burning. If convicted on all counts, Dinkle faces 45 years in jail and $750,000 in fines; Morris faces up to five years on jail and $500,000 in fines.

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