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PRESS RELEASE: Three Tennessee Men, Colton L. Partin, Kyle C. Montgomery, and James Smiley Sentenced for Launching Mortar-Style Fireworks at African-Americans

Department of Justice

Office of Public Affairs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Three Tennessee Men Sentenced for Launching Mortar-Style Fireworks at African-Americans

Colton L. Partin, 22, of Apison, Tenn., Kyle C. Montgomery, 23, and James Smiley, 27, both of Chattanooga, Tenn., were sentenced today by Chief U.S. District Court Judge Curtis L. Collier. Smiley and Montgomery were sentenced to 12 months in prison and three years of supervised release for conspiring to intimidate African-Americans in the free exercise and enjoyment of housing rights secured to them by the laws of the United States. Partin was sentenced to 18 months probation, including six months home confinement. All three men will also serve 300 hours of community service. The men pleaded guilty on Jan. 6, 2012.

In the early morning hours of July 9, 2011, at least four African-American residents of East Lake Courts Public Housing Authority in Chattanooga were on the porch of one of the units. As they conversed, defendants Smiley, Partin and Montgomery drove by several times yelling racial slurs and launched mortar-type fireworks, from a cylinder, directly toward these individuals. The individuals on the porch avoided the explosions, one of which was captured on video by the Chattanooga Housing Authority. Another explosion shattered a window pane in an apartment of an African-American resident of the East Lake Courts. This individual was asleep inside with her infant child and her boyfriend’s adolescent siblings.

Based on a 911 call, the Chattanooga Police Department swiftly apprehended and arrested Smiley, Partin and Montgomery. Fireworks, like the ones fired at the individuals on the porch, were photographed and observed in the bed of the truck. Smiley, Partin and Montgomery admitted their involvement to the officers. They further admitted that the explosives were fired toward the individuals in order to intimidate them because they were African-American.

“Today’s sentence sends the clear message that every person in our country has the right to live peacefully in their communities free from hate-fueled acts of violence,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “The department is committed to vigorously enforcing our nation’s civil rights laws.”

“This is an example to others that the exhibition of actions based upon racial or any other kind of prejudice will result in federal convictions and confinement, said Bill Killian, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee. Acts of violence based upon prejudice, regardless of the nature of the prejudice, will be actively prosecuted.”

This case was investigated by the FBI and Chattanooga Police and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Chris Poole of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee and Trial Attorney Myesha Braden of the Civil Rights Division.

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Most of the information you will see comes from some Federal/state Government documents or Federal/State Governm Agency. -----------------------------------------------The fellow that can only see a week ahead is always the popular fellow, for he is looking with the crowd. But the one that can see years ahead, he has a telescope but he can't make anybody believe that he has it. ~~~~Will Rogers __The woman who follows the crowd will usually go no further than the crowd. The woman who walks alone is likely to find herself in places no one has ever been before.~ Albert Einstein ~"I never work better than when I am inspired by anger; for when I am angry, I can write, pray, and preach well, for then my whole temperament is quickened, my understandingsharpen​ed, and all mundane vexations and temptations depart.” ~Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. _________________________________________________________________________________________ ~"The bosom of America is open to receive not only the Opulent and respectable Stranger, but the oppressed and persecuted of all Nations and Religions; whom we shall welcome to a participation of all our rights and privileges, if by decency and propriety of conduct they appear to merit the enjoyment".~___________________________________ George Washington, Address to the Members of the Volunteer Association of Ireland, December 2, 1783 Fredericacade@gmail.com

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