A Georgia judge sentenced a couple to prison time today for their involvement in a 2015 incident in which a group they had been portion of waved Confederate flags, shouted racial slurs and produced armed threats, all at adults and young children attending a child's celebration outside of Atlanta.
Jose Torres, 26, and Kayla Norton, 25, cried nowadays in a Douglas County court as they had been sentenced to 20 years and 15 years in jail, respectively.
In July 2015, the parents of three young children have been part of a group of Confederate flag supporters calling themselves Respect the Flag. For two days that summer time, the group rode about in pickup trucks threatening black families and calling them racial slurs across two counties in the Atlanta suburbs.
The group targeted black households shortly just after the Charleston church massacre due to the fact its members have been upset that South Carolina had responded to the brutal slayings by removing the Confederate battle flag from various internet sites.
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At one point, the group pulled up to a birthday party for a black child in Douglasville. The group's members allegedly threatened to kill the partygoers, with Torres confronting the loved ones with a gun that Norton had loaded. The loved ones named the police.
Video of the incident was posted on YouTube by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
In an indictment, Torres and Norton, amongst others, have been charged with aggravated assault, terroristic threats and violation of the state's Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act.
For the duration of the pair's sentencing right now, the judge said the pair's actions "have been motivated by racial hatred," according to The Associated Press.
Through tears, Norton addressed the relatives of the kid whose birthday she and other individuals disrupted.
"That is not me. That is not me. That is not him," Norton said in court following her sentencing. "I would by no means walk up to you and say those words to you. And I am so sorry that happened to you."
4 people today had been charged with felonies, according to ABC affiliate WSB-Television.com on the other hand, the other two folks pleaded guilty and got shorter prison terms.
The judge, saying Torres and Norton had committed a hate crime, also banned them from entering Douglas County following they have been released from prison.
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