US woman 'set on fire in racial attack'

2012-10-23 09:08

New Orleans - A 20-year-old black woman said she was set on fire by three men who wrote the initials KKK and a racial slur on her car in north-eastern Louisiana, police said on Monday.

Officers found Sharmeka Moffitt with burns on more than half of her body when they responded to her emergency call on Sunday night, said Louisiana State Police spokesperson Lieutenant Julie Lewis.

The FBI is investigating the attack as a possible hate crime, but no arrests had been made as of late Monday, Lewis said. She said Moffitt was in critical condition at a hospital and that some of her injuries were third-degree burns.

Moffitt told police the men doused her in a flammable liquid and set her on fire at a park in Winnsboro, a town in Franklin Parish. Lewis said she extinguished the fire using water from a spigot before a police officer arrived.

Officers found the letters KKK — an apparent reference to the white supremacist Ku Klux Klan — and a racial slur smeared in a paste-like substance on the hood of her car, Lewis said.

On the emergency call, Moffitt described her attackers as three men wearing white hoods or hats, Lewis said. She later told a Winnsboro Police officer who responded to the call that the men were wearing white hoodies.

More facts

She was unable to say what race her attackers were. The officer found no suspects or vehicles at Civitan Park where the attack allegedly happened, and the park has no surveillance cameras, Lewis said. She said the state crime lab was analyzing several pieces of evidence.

Franklin Sheriff Kevin Cobb called it "a horrific event" and said authorities would "follow the facts and seek justice."

Otis Chisley, the president of the local branch of the NAACP, a civil rights group, said he had been in touch with Moffitt's distraught family. He said he was waiting for more facts to come to light before drawing any conclusions about what happened and that "everyone wants to move with caution".

Regardless of the investigation's outcome, though, Chisley said, racism and KKK activity remain a fact of life in the state.

"It's prevalent throughout Louisiana," he said. "It's hidden but it exists."

  • UncleShep - 2012-10-23 09:32

    its hidden but it exists......

      mlucejko - 2012-10-23 15:32

      Its so sad that people are still judged by the colour of their skin ?? :(

  • fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 09:39

    I thought it was only in Russia where Africans are despised!

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 09:55

      "A 20-year-old black woman said she was set on fire"?

      Shaun Daly - 2012-10-23 09:57

      So black = African? I'm pretty sure she was American.

      Sheilan.Clarke - 2012-10-23 10:02

      @ Shaun Daly: The opening line. "A 20-year-old black woman...." Your welcome.

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 10:06

      @Shaun Yes, black is African, be they in England, Jamaica or the US!

      tasneem.sattar.5 - 2012-10-23 10:12

      nah, you're hated everywhere...unlucky man:(

      shaunpatrickdaly - 2012-10-23 10:17

      Sheilan: again, black does not equal African. Over 70% of Americans who identify themselves as "black" have some european blood, just as an equally impressive number of Americans who identify themselves as "white" have some black ancestry. Fidel: The color of ones skin, especially in someplace as diverse as the US, doesn't begin to describe their culture. Case in point, you've obviously never met a Jamaican as the LAST thing Jamaicans want to be identified as is "African". Ignorance is a two way street boyo.

      sb.prins1 - 2012-10-23 10:24

      @ shaun dalyNew Orleans - A 20-year-old black woman said she was set on fire by three men who wrote the initials KKK and a racial slur on her car in north-eastern Louisiana, police said on Monday. pity you cant read

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 10:27

      The hate of the "other" is a lifestyle choice, and it's bloody stupid to hate people because of their colour or faith or ethnicity or whatever else.

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 10:39

      @Shaun Jamaicans couldn't have expressed this (their Africaness) more than in their culture and art. "Negroes" in the US have even put this as a prefix when describing their race. The thing is despite the centuries Africans have spent in the diaspora, they are reminded of their Africaness on a daily basis. By the way the reference to Russia was tongue in cheek, a reference to a regular imbecile on these threads, named Anthony, who maintains that it is only in Russia where Africans aren't tolerated.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-10-23 14:22

      Fidel, The hate of the "other" is a lifestyle choice, and it's bloody stupid to hate people because of their colour or faith or ethnicity or whatever else. Wow, this is a bit rich coming from YOU.......!! I have seen some pretty racist comments from you, directed against Whites. Either you got a memory like a siff, or you are a plain bullsh.tter !!!

  • bruce.williams.1044186 - 2012-10-23 09:47


  • kimsaiyanprincess.murison - 2012-10-23 09:49

    - Why are things like this still happening?

      Shaun Daly - 2012-10-23 09:52

      Because ignorance, hate and violence are, and always will be, a part of the human experience.

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 11:22

      Racism is inbred, it is instilled in people in their formative years by the society they live in and their elders and peers. You can't turn racists into non-racists, you can only hope that with education they learn to suppress their racist tendencies.

      tasneem.sattar.5 - 2012-10-23 13:28

      or perhaps these opinions are formed based on their experience of the race group in general? when looking at the race of those who are brutal and cruel, who rape, murder, steal, litter, burn trains, burn libraries, destroy toilets, go on rampages destroying innocent people's property and injuring and killing when striking, who strike, who despite BEE/AA, bursaries, lower entry requirements, nepotism, a majority, still can't, compete with others, and still underperform in almost all fields. They produce very little of value. Despite not having a job, or earning very little (despite all the opportunity to improve their skills and improve earning power) still have a dozen children, for which they draw grants hamstringing the country by draining the tax coffers of money that could be used to take the country forward. They constantly blame these other race groups for all their faults, never accepting responsibility for and fixing their own F ups, despite the fact that its these other groups that provide the lionshare of taxes that pay for most of what they do have. There are obviously exceptions, but for the majority of your race, this is true, so demonstrate to the rest of us that you can respect, can contribute and not just leech, can be honest, can take responsibility and improve yourselves and the environment you live in, and can think of someone other than yourself, and you'll find people will not hate you, but actually be quite complimentary.Drop the victim mentality,and fix

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 13:49

      I'm impressed with your ironic capacity to stereotype 40 million people, most of whom you've never met. Word of advice, if you're going to racially stereotype, do it to a group that isn't one of the biggest out there! You must be big on racial purity?

      tasneem.sattar.5 - 2012-10-23 14:42

      I'm not stereotyping all 40 million, but rather the majority (and I'm also not only referring to only South African blacks, but the entire world over...oh dear, now I've gone an done it!). Of course this is a stereotype and a generalisation, I thought that would go without saying, obviously a stereotype doesn't mean all in the group, but it is the identifying of traits and characteristics peculiar or common to a large proportion of the group. Their numbers don't make my observation any less true (don't really see the relevance). Still doesn't change the fact that my observations are traits common to most of the group, just like you and most blacks call us racists, or rich, greedy, evil, without rhythm, or ability to jump. So why now do get your nose all out of joint when I send it least you can easily verify my claims, just look at the rest of africa (not one successful country, how is that even possible! the only country that was successful was us... when whites ran it - Apartheid aside, I'm refering to economic success here). Look at the level of corruption in our own govt. at all levels. look in the papers, the tv, prisons, real life, the evidence is clear for all to see. Denying it doesn't make it untrue. The perpetrators are not only doing them self a disservice, but let down those from their own race group who are productive, by reinforcing the stereotype on a daily basis. stop blaming, start fixing!

      tasneem.sattar.5 - 2012-10-23 14:46

      I'm not big on racial anything, I am big on honesty and integrity, and on being a productive citizen and not a leech. I'm also big on accountability, fairness, a level playing field, education, cleanliness, respect for the environment cos i'm not the only one in it, hard work, not raping, not murdering, not get the idea.

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 15:50

      "but it is the identifying of traits and characteristics peculiar or common to a large proportion of the group." And what are these traits peculiar to this group? What you have written is gibberish, designed to placate those idiots who live by racial stereotypes regarding Africans. Economic success for who, derived how, by exploiting Africans, and you call that success. Are you really that ignorant? The whole purpose of Apartheid was to enshrine white privilege (you call it success). To relativise apartheid is filthy!

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-10-23 16:01

      Fidel, But it is YOU, who likes MINORITY regimes and are a RACIST !! So, WHAT is your problem with apartheid ????????????

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-10-23 16:23

      Don't try to distract me with your nonsense if it does not pertain directly to what I write.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-10-23 16:31

      . "Nonsense" ? Maybe to you, but for most people being a racists, is far from "nonsense" The problem with you is, that besides being a bullsh.tter, you are an extreme dishonest person !!!

  • jomar.delange - 2012-10-23 10:21

    How vile.

  • marialuisa.franciolini - 2012-10-23 17:58

    It 's absurd that a person is burned alive because of the color of her skin, whatever it is. Who does such a thing is a criminal and has no excuse. I just hope the police catch them as soon as possible so they end their life in prison as they deserve.

      dewalds3 - 2012-10-24 09:57

      Yeah - in the end she made it all up. Isn't it absurd that someone will make up such a terrible story to depict others as racists? I think she should go to the prison you are talking about as she justly deserves?

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