Mississippi woman says her son set a cross on fire at her house

A Mississippi woman said she spotted her son's dog outside her home after a cross was set on fire there.
By Frances Burns   |   Aug. 19, 2014 at 6:54 PM
| License Photo

RALEIGH, Miss., Aug. 19 (UPI) -- Gaylene Daniels of Mississippi says her son set a cross on fire at her home because he was angry that her boyfriend's mixed-race grandchildren stayed with them.

Jeff Daniels, 37, also allegedly beat and shot Craig Wilson last Friday during a family cookout. Gaylene Daniels told the Jackson Clarion-Ledger her charge that her son was responsible for the cross Aug. 2 had led to a family feud.

Daniels has been charged with aggravated assault. He was released on $20,000 bail.

Her grandson, Dillian, joined his father in the attack, Gaylene Daniels said.

Wilson remained in the University of Mississippi Medical Center with his condition upgraded to fair after surgery Tuesday.

Gaylene Daniels said that on Aug. 2 she saw the cross when she opened the front door after someone knocked on it. She did not see her son but she spotted his dog, Jack Daniels, and said she recognized the wood used in the cross.

Wilson's grandchildren were spending the weekend with them, Gaylene Daniels said. She said she had heard her son was angry about the visit but he had not said anything to her.

Daniels said she is unsure what she and Wilson will do now. The couple have been together for 12 years.

"We can't go home," she said.

Smith County Sheriff Charlie Crumpton said he has no grounds to charge Daniels with a hate crime.

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