US Representative Bennie Thompson of Mississippi has asked that the FBI become involved in the investigation of the slaying of openly gay mayoral candidate Marco McMillian of Clarksdale. The Democrat’s district includes Clarksdale, and said that, while he has confidence in the sheriff investigating the murder, he wants the FBI to be involved because McMillian’s family has asked.
Mississippi law does not include protections regarding hate crimes against LGBT people. Thompson stated that “If another set of eyes looking at it would provide additional information, I think it would be helpful to the McMillian family.”
The FBI has not stated whether or not they would be involved as of yet.
McMillian was considered to be the first openly gay candidate in the state to have a viable chance to win public office. Coahoma County sheriff’s spokesman Will Rooker has stated that the investigation is continuing and they are looking into whether or not hate crimes laws were violated with regards to McMillian’s race; however, Lawrence Reed is also black, so the law may not apply with regards to a hate crime.
Thompson stated that “The level of violence shown in this incident is unconscionable and the perpetrator of this atrocious act should be held accountable to the full extent of the law.”