Feds look into Cracker Barrel incident - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Feds look into Cracker Barrel incident

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Danielle Knox, WGCL/CNN

Morrow, Ga -  The FBI is investigating a possible hate crime in Morrow, where a white man is accused of beating an African American woman in front of her child at Cracker Barrel.

Now, the man is free on what some are calling a very low bond, and that has Community activists fuming mad.  

"The concern is that this gentleman allegedly is back o the street in less than 24 hours after this incident happened," said Derrick Boazman, a community activist.

 The NAACP showed its support for what it calls a hate crime. Troy Dale West is facing misdemeanor charges of battery, disorderly conduct and a felony charge of cruelty to children.

"There were no misdemeanors committed here. All of them were felonies. We are Concerned, in fact, we're mad as hell," said Boazman. 

Community activists are outraged at the charges and the fact that west is free on $10,000 bond. They say after what witnesses and police say he did to 36-year-old Tashawnea Hill and her seven-year-old daughter Shiyenn, he should be locked up.

"He had no good reason, unprovoked, and that's why we think he's dangerous. He's a genocidal racist that needs to be picked up off the streets,"  said Boazman.

They also want the surveillance video of the beating at the Morrow Cracker Barrel released. Even without the video, witnesses paint a horrifying picture of what Hill and her daughter endured, simply because Hill said, 'Excuse me sir, you almost hit my daughter with the door.'

That's when witnesses say the 6 foot 2 inch 215 pound West, who is from Poulan, Georgia, started hitting, kicking and violently punching Hill, an Army Reservist, all the while hurling racial slurs at her, repeatedly calling her The 'n' word.

"I'm as appalled as they are in terms of what I've learned about the case,"  said Clayton County District Attorney Tracy Graham Lawson.

She says more charges could be coming, though she would not say which charges. "Based upon conversations with her, I will more than likely be presenting more charges to the grand jury that those three."

A hearing is scheduled in Clayton County for September 24th.

Police say West admitted to hitting Hill, but accused her of spitting on him first. But several witnesses say they did not see Hill spit.