The first of three men accused of branding a Navajo Nation
with a swastika goes on trial today in Farmington, New Mexico.
William Hatch, 29, is charged with first-degree felony kidnapping, second-degree felony conspiracy to commit kidnapping, third-degree felony aggravated battery causing great bodily harm and fourth-degree felony conspiracy to commit aggravated battery.
Along with two other men, Hatch allegedly kidnapped Vincent Kee, branded a swastika on his arm, shaved a swastika into the back of his head and wrote White Power" and anti-Indian remarks on his body.
Separately, Hatch is charged in federal court for hate crimes.
He is a member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe
and is part Navajo, his attorney said.
"The Farmington police and law enforcement in general are using this case to vindicate the white community with our local Native Americans, and they are doing it, in this case, on the back of a Native American," Eric Morrow told The Farmington Daily Times.
The paper said a verdict could come as early as Friday.
Get the Story:
Nazi branding lands in court
(The Farmington Daily Times 5/4)
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