Anti Bias Task Force: Klan Active Here, Southampton Seeks Help from County

The Town of Southampton, says it is seeking the help of the Suffolk County Police hate crimes unit in investigating a series of alleged bias crimes in the area.

The decision is in response to a request by the Southampton 
Town Anti-Bias Task Force and a resolution of the Southampton Town
 Board. The action was announced at a press conference
 called by the Anti Bias Task Force on Monday.

None of the east end towns of Southampton, Southold, Shelter Island and
 Riverhead have used the Suffolk County hate crimes unit as yet. 

Advocates for minority groups have long argued
 that it requires a specialist in this area to recognize
a crime as hate - related. 

Lucius Ware of the Anti-Bias group and the Eastern Long Island NAACP 
says the record of hate crimes investigation in Southampton has been 
abysmal. Ware says

"the case often ends with no report, inconclusive findings or no findings at all".

The recent discovery of a hangman's noose along a nature trail 
near Bridgehampton was cited as the latest instance of hate-related
 crime in the area.
Bob Zellner, a member of the Anti-Bias group and a white southerner
 who worked in the 1960s civil rights movement charged that
 the Ku Klux Klan is active in Southampton and that authorities
 have ignored this.
Zellner said: 

"The town ranger said the noose was a kid's prank, not the main symbol of the 
well organized Ku Klux Klan here in Southampton. 
Just take it down so people won’t be disturbed by the gruesome hate message. 
The Klan is distributing hate literature in mailboxes here? oh well, kids will be kids."

The Anti-Bias Task Force is also urging the town to seek the help of the FBI and the US Justice Department in investigating the incidents. 


Report from WPKN / WPKM News, Tuesday December 4. WPKN news is heard Mon-Fri at 6:30 pm following Free Speech Radio News from Pacifica on WPKN 89.5 FM Bridgeport / WPKM 88.7 FM Montauk.