Delivering American University's news and views since 1925. | Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Former SG president Taylor Dumpson seeks $1.5 million in damages from neo-Nazi website founder

Dumpson filed a lawsuit against the founder in April 2018, following a hate crime

Former SG president Taylor Dumpson seeks $1.5 million in damages from neo-Nazi website founder

Taylor Dumpson, the former Student Government president who graduated from AU in May, raises a fist at a September 2017 rally against hate on campus.

Taylor Dumpson, a former AU Student Government president, is seeking more than $1.5 million in court-ordered damages against the founder of a neo-Nazi website for leading an online harrasment campaign against her, following an on-campus hate crime.

The Associated Press reported on Tuesday that Dumpson’s attorneys asked a federal judge in Washington for a default judgement against Andrew Anglin, the founder of neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer, in a court filing April 29. In total, Dumpson is seeking more than $1.8 million in damages and fees, which includes $1.5 million against Anglin and his company.

The Eagle reached out to Dumpson and her attorneys, but they declined to comment.

Dumpson, who was the first black woman elected as SG president, and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated were targeted in a hate crime in May 2017. A person hung bananas with racist messages from nooses around AU’s campus on Dumpson’s first day in office. 

No one was found responsible for the crime, and AU President Sylvia Burwell announced in a memo last year that “all credible leads have been exhausted” in the investigation. 

Following the hate crime, campus protests ensued, and leaders of black organizations debated over what courses of action they wanted to take in response.

In April 2018, Dumpson filed a lawsuit against Anglin and two other online harassers after she was targeted following the hate crime.

Anglin’s website, which features stories under the subsections of “Jewish Problem” and “Race War,” published an article in May 2017 that called viewers to send Dumpson messages via social media.

Dumpson settled out of court in December with Evan James McCarty, who harrassed Dumpson on Twitter. 

In one post, McCarty tweeted “READY THE TROOPS” along with a picture of bananas.  In another tweet, he tagged Dumpson. McCarty went by the name of “Byron de la Vandal” on Twitter. This is a likely reference to Byron De La Beckwith, who killed civil rights leader Medgar Evers in 1963.

The December settlement included McCarty agreeing to apologize to Dumpson in writing and video, receive “anti-hate training” and publicly renounce white supremacy and other forms of bigotry.

Kristen Clarke, the president and executive director of the lawyers’ committee, told the AP on Tuesday that they wanted to make other white supremacists accountable for their actions.

“We see no reason to tread lightly here,” Clarke said in an interview on Tuesday. “We have a client who suffered immensely due to the defendant’s conduct.”

saustin@theeagleonline.com


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