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Black Community Activists Call For Hate Crime Charges Against City Council Gadfly

LOS ANGELES ( — Members of the black community came out in force Monday morning to show their support for Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson, who was threatened by a longtime council gadfly.

"We are calling for the district attorney, Jackie Lacey, to investigate Mr. Spindler," said Danny Bakewell, publisher of the black newspaper L.A. Sentinel and a longtime community activist. "We are asking for him to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law, and we are asking for the law to be researched so we find a way to prosecute."

Wayne Spindler, 46, was arrested after police say he submitted a public-comment card on which he drew a burning cross, a tree with a person hanging from a noose and a Ku Klux Klan-type figure holding a sign with a racial epithet directed at Wesson.

"I was unbelievably angry and I wanted to lash out, but I remembered that that's not what my grandparents did," Wesson said.

Spindler was escorted out of the meeting and arrested on suspicion of making criminal threats. He was released that night after posting $75,000 bail.

Activists at Monday's news conference called for hate charges to be filed against Spindler. The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said that the case is currently under review.

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