ABC has reported that new details have emerged in the case of Megan Williams, who was kidnapped and subjected to various acts of torture, sexual abuse, and humiliation by Karen Burton (top center) and fellow defendants.
According to statements read out during the defendants’ preliminary court hearings, the victim told police she had had hot wax and hot water poured on her, and that she was forced to drink a cup of two male defendants’ urine. All six defendants now face charges of kidnapping, which carry a maximum life sentence. Incidentally, no hate crime charges have as yet been filed—the victim is Black and was called “nigger” during some of the assaults—because, prosecutors say, hate crime convictions carry a maximum penalty of only 10 years.
While I am often critical of local law enforcement officials for failing to investigate possible hate crime cases, this time I would rather the six accused get the maximum penalty than a hate crime conviction.