KKK flag displayed in Grosse Pointe Park home does not warrant Ethnic Intimidation charge, prosecutor says

Posted at 10:19 AM, Mar 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-02 17:46:45-05

WAYNE COUNTY, Mich. (WXYZ) — The Wayne County Prosecutor denied a display warrant request after a KKK flag was displayed at a home in Grosse Pointe Park facing a Black neighbor.

Prosecutors say that on Feb. 16, JeDonna Dinges, 57, saw a Ku Klux Klan flag displayed in her neighbor's side window. The flag was clearly visible to Dinges and her family from their dining room.

Following an incident on Jan. 20, prosecutors say Dinges installed a security camera facing the neighbor's house when she found a full gas can inside her garbage container and was concerned for the safety of herself and her family. The flag was displayed across from the security camera.

Prosecutors say the Michigan Ethnic Intimidation Statue, MCLA 750.147b requires that there must be physical contact, damage, destruction, defacement of property, or threats to do so. After a thorough review of the facts and evidence in this case, the WCPO says there is insufficient evidence to charge Ethnic Intimidation or any other charge.

“There is absolutely no question that what happened to Ms. Dinges was despicable, traumatizing, and completely unacceptable. But, very unfortunately in my view, not a crime, Prosecutor Kym Worthy said. "The KKK flag, while intending to be visible to Ms. Dinges, was hanging inside of her neighbor’s house. We could not even begin to charge Ethnic Intimidation under current Michigan law. I strongly encourage the Michigan Legislature to look, revise, and create laws to protect citizens from this kind of horrible conduct,” said Prosecutor Worthy.

The flag sparked a protest in Grosse Pointe in support of Dinges and her family.