The Vermont attorney general’s office says a former Vermont legislator who resigned after receiving racial threats was “the victim of racial harassment” but says no charges will be filed because of free speech protections.
Attorney General T.J. Donovan announced Monday his office has completed its investigation and launched a new statewide reporting system for bias incidents. He says, “We have an obligation to speak up as a community against racism and hate.”
Kiah Morris became Vermont’s first black female legislator in 2014. She says racist threats and harassment followed until she quit last year.
A man who harassed her online, who said he is a white nationalist, showed up at the press conference to boos and angry protests. Some in the crowd held up their coats to shield him from view.
Morris says she and her family have endured a home invasion, vandalism and saw swastikas painted on trees nearby. A group of youths also pounded on her windows and doors at night, forcing her and her husband, convalescing after heart surgery, to leave town.
Morris said she was dissatisfied with the response by Bennington police. The police chief has defended his department.
The attorney general announced in September that his office would take over the investigation.