Rhode Island Woman Convicted on Disorderly Conduct Charge for Harassing Black Family at Restaurant

The judge ruled that telling someone 'Blacks don't belong here' isn't racially motivated.

Illustration for article titled Rhode Island Woman Convicted on Disorderly Conduct Charge for Harassing Black Family at Restaurant
Photo: ALDECA studio (Shutterstock)

Last year, as people grew more and more vocal about not fucking with racism like that, an equal and opposing force of Karens, wypipo, and general assholes alike arose to say the quiet part out loud.

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Take for instance a Black family who were minding their business at a Rhode Island restaurant last summer when a white woman took it upon herself to harass them. A judge convicted that woman on disorderly conduct charges on Tuesday, but also ruled that her actions didn’t constitute as a hate crime.

Just what were her actions, you ask?

Well, according to NBC News, 34-year-old white woman Christine Longo began to yell unprovoked at Adote Akpabie when he went into the Coast Guard House restaurant in Narragansett last June. Akpabie was simply asking for a table for his wife and two daughters when Longo felt the need to point out “this Black guy.” Not content to leave it at that, Longo went outside and began to harass the family, telling them “Blacks don’t belong here,” according to a police statement.

Akpabie, a pilot, testified in court that he was “a bit surprised,” by the incident and his 18-year-old daughter, Laudela, testified that the ordeal left her feeling “humiliated” and “unwelcome.”

What kind of dick do you have to be to harass a family? I know racists aren’t exactly fit the definition of morally sound people, but how hard is it to just shut the fuck up and mind your business?

From NBC News:

Longo, 34, was sentenced to six months of probation and 50 hours of community service on the misdemeanor charge. She was also issued a no trespass order to the restaurant, and ordered to undergo anger management counseling and diversity training.

She declined an opportunity to address the court.

The state attorney general’s office had alleged that her actions were a hate crime and therefore she should have been subject to a harsher sentence of up to a year in jail.

Rhode Island does not have a free-standing hate crime statute. But if a defendant is convicted of a crime, prosecutors can seek an enhanced sentence in a separate hearing by proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the offense was motivated by “hatred or animus toward the actual or perceived disability, religion, color, race, national origin or ancestry, sexual orientation, or gender of that person.”

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I know what you’re thinking. “How is telling someone ‘Blacks don’t belong here,’ not racially motivated?” Trust me, I asked the same question. Longo’s attorney, Chad Bank, argued that her remarks were constitutionally protected free speech. “The rule of law is clear,” Bank said. “Offensive and hateful speech is protected.”

So, apparently, calling someone a nigger: not a hate crime. Calling someone a nigger and socking them in jaw: now that’s hate crime.

The stylin', profilin', limousine riding, jet flying, wheelin' and dealin' nerd of The Root.

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Longo’s attorney, Chad Bank

Had to google this guy and he is EXACTLY how I pictured. Checks out

chadbanklaw.com