WASHINGTON, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- A Louisiana man faces hate crime charges for allegedly hanging a raccoon by a noose at a school attended by black students under court order, prosecutors said.
The U.S. Justice Department said Monday a federal grand jury has indicted Christopher Shane Montgomery of Bastrop, La., on charges of conspiracy to commit a hate crime, tampering with a witness and lying to federal authorities.
The indictment alleged Montgomery and another person, who was not identified in the indictment, put a noose around the neck of a dead raccoon and hung the carcass from a flagpole at Beekman Junior High School, intending to intimate black students attending the school under a court-ordered busing policy.
The indictment alleges Montgomery lied on two occasions to an FBI agent investigating the November 2007 incident and tampered with a witness during the investigation, the Justice Department said in a news release.
If convicted of all the charges, Montgomery could be sentenced to as much as 40 years in prison, prosecutors said.