NC officials investigate hanged Obama effigy at early voting site

1:53 PM, Nov 2, 2012   |    comments
Screenshot of a YouTube video posted by V.R. Phipps, in front of his trailer of public figures hanged in effigy, including President Obama.
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GOLDSBORO, N.C. (WBTW/AP)  - North Carolina election officials have asked prosecutors to investigate reports of a trailer parked at an early voting site that held effigies of former and current elected officials with nooses around their necks.

State Board of Elections Executive Director Gary Bartlett said a truck with the attached open-air trailer pulled up to a Wayne County library that offered early voting Thursday morning.

Photographs show eight effigies and signs on the trailer side naming President Barack Obama, Gov. Beverly Perdue and state and local law enforcement officials.

In September, the wagon with similar effigies was driven through Wayne and Johnston Counties. The trailer belongs to a man named V.R. Phipps, who lives in Duplin County, according to WTVD in Durham.

Bartlett said information was forwarded to the U.S. Attorney's Office and the Wayne County district attorney. Bartlett said First Amendment freedoms end if someone is intimidated or gets mad while trying to vote.

WTVD reported that Phipps has been driving the wagon around for more than three years in September. Several months ago, Phipps drove it through Midtown Manhattan.

The Secret Service told the TV station that they know about the wagon, as do local police.

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