A Texas judge yesterday dropped homicide charges against two white men accused of hitting a black man with their truck and then dragging him to his death, setting off a flurry of racism accusations by civil rights activists. Citing a lack of physical or eyewitness evidence, the judge released Shannon Finley and Charles Crostley, freeing them of any responsibility in the death of Brandon McClelland, a 24-year-old black male who was reportedly friends with Finley and Crostley.
While prosecutors admit the case currently does not have enough evidence to proceed, civil rights groups like the Nation of Islam and the New Black Panthers believe that McClelland's death was racially motivated.
"If this is not a hate crime, there is no such thing as a hate crime," said Krystal Muhammad of the New Black Panthers in a statement. "Even though our brother was viciously slain, we will not let him die in vain."
The Associated Press has more: