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Utah man insists he did interracial family a favor by sending them a death threat

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A Utah man admits he sent a threatening letter to an interracial family in his neighborhood, but he insists he was doing them a favor.

Robert Keller pleaded guilty in September to violating the housing rights of a family in his neighborhood by sending them an angry, profane letter after spotting their 13-year-old black son walking with his white sister.

“There’s no little black girls to go out with, so our daughters are in line,” Keller wrote, according to court records. “I catch that n*gger around my daughter I’ll kill the assh*le and then go find what stupid person brought him here in the first place.”

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The 71-year-old Keller was sentenced Monday to the maximum one year in federal prison and apologized for writing the letter, but he said his intentions were misunderstood.

“I’ll admit I lost my temper,” Keller said. “It wasn’t really meant to be a threat – it was more or less to wake them up to what was going to happen down the road.”

He did not offer any details about what might happen.

The teen’s sister said she does not feel comfortable in the Hurricane neighborhood, and she worries about her children after receiving the letter last December.

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“Members of our community have a constitutional right to live in their home without fear, and the department will not tolerate threats of violence that infringe on that right,” said acting Assistant Attorney General Molly Moran for the Civil Rights Division in a statement.

Defense attorneys told the court that Keller’s mother died at his birth and he was shuffled among family members, including an alcoholic father and a grandfather who beat him with a razor strap, as he grew up in Idaho.

Attorneys also said Keller had no history of violence and was known for volunteering to help his neighbors and other community members.

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“This is not just a one dimensional person here,” said defense attorney Kevin Hart. “This is a complicated person who has some old-fashioned sets of ideas.”

Among those ideas, according to a mental health provider’s court-ordered assessment, was Keller’s apparent belief that his “neighbor is participating with the NAACP, and [his belief that] ‘Obama and [U.S. Attorney Eric Holder] have sent lawyers out to nail [his] ass.’”

Prosecutor Carlos Esqueda disagreed with defense attorneys, who said the sentence — which includes a year of supervised release, a $1,000 fine, and 260 hours of community service – was excessive.

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“Obviously, racism still exists today,” Esqueda said. “It lives, and it breathes next door in our neighborhoods. Justice needs to be firm, and justice needs to be swift.”


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Mulvaney’s ‘astonishing public act of legal self-destruction’ can be used against Trump: ex-prosecutor

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In the opening segment on CNN's "New Day," former prosecutor Elie Honig claimed he was stunned by acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney's press conference on Thursday, saying he just handed prosecutors all they need to go after President Donald Trump.

Speaking with hosts Alisyn Camerota and John Berman, the former prosecutor  could only describe Mulvaney's presser, where he admitted that the administration was indulging in quid pro quo negotiations with foreign governments to get dirt on political opponents, as an "astonishing public act of legal and strategic self-destruction."

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Why key Senate Republicans should be terrified as Trump drags the party down

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Incumbent Republican senators in swing states and blue states find themselves caught between a rock and a hard place. On one hand, criticizing President Donald Trump can result in a burdensome GOP primary battle; on the other hand, being perceived as pro-Trump can be the kiss of death in places where Trump is unpopular. And according to a report by Eli Yokley for Morning Consult’s website, things aren’t getting any better for incumbent GOP senators who are considered vulnerable in the 2020 election.

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‘It was nutso’: Devin Nunes reportedly made himself look ridiculous by obsessing over the Steele Dossier in Ukraine hearing

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While the House Intelligence Committee is spearheading impeachment with its investigation into President Donald Trump’s Ukraine scandal, it seems Republican Rep. Devin Nunes of California can’t stop obsessing about the Steele Dossier.

According to the Daily Beast, the ranking member of the committee launched into an exchange during the closed impeachment inquiry hearings about the dossier on Thursday with Gordon Sondland, the ambassador to the European Union who is at the center of the Ukraine scandal. He was a point person in Trump’s efforts to get the Ukrainians to announce an investigation into the 2016 election as well as former Vice President Joe Biden in exchange for favorable treatment from the White House.

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