White man who threatened to lynch Black woman slapped with civil rights complaint

A civil rights complaint has been filed against a Maine man after he allegedly threatened to lynch a Black woman during a confrontation last month, Central Maine reports.

The complaint was filed against 23-year-old Tyler Tripp, who is white, and says he approached the 20-year-old Black woman in his car at a high speed. When the woman yelled at him to slow down, he stopped, got out of the car, and “called her a racial epithet and threatened to hang her from a tree. He went on to say she deserved it because she was black (Tripp used a racial epithet in lieu of the word black)."

“When confronted by a Norway police officer, the defendant admitted he called the victim a dirty (expletive) (racial epithet) and threatened that he was going to hang the victim from a tree," the complaint continues.

Attorney General Aaron M. Frey says Tripp violated the Maine Civil Rights Act and should be fined up to $5,000 for each violation.

“Racist threats of violence have no place in Maine. No person should be threatened with violence due to the color of that person’s skin,” Frey said in a statement. “Defendant’s use of the imagery of lynching is even more abhorrent in a civil society. I will use my authority under the Civil Rights Act to stop threats of violence before they escalate into physical harm.”