Hanover investigating racist post of teens, one with gun
School system won’t say if two boys in photo are students
The Hanover County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a racist social media post that includes a photo of two white teens, one of whom is holding a gun.
“Let’s hunt some (n-----),” reads the message, posted to Snapchat.
Hanover County Public Schools spokesman Chris Whitley said the school district reported the post to the Sheriff’s Office. He would not say whether the teens were Hanover schools students, saying the system could not “legally discuss specific students or their educational records.”
“Without question, Hanover County Public Schools does not tolerate racist, vulgar, profane, or obscene language or conduct,” Whitley said in a statement.
The Sheriff’s Office has identified the boys in the picture but will not release their names because they are under 18, said county Supervisor Faye Prichard, who called the message “horrific, ugly and awful. And quite frankly stupid.”
“There must be consequences for this,” she added.
What that might entail was unclear Wednesday. A spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office would not answer questions about the post or what charge, specifically, was under investigation. All but one Hanover School Board member declined comment or did not respond to questions.
Reached by phone, board member Norman Sulser expressed concern: “I’m disturbed by anyone doing that, no matter what school they attend.”
The post, shared widely by students and community members outraged over the content, did not come as a surprise to Patricia Hunter-Jordan.
“I wish I was shocked, but I wasn’t,” said HunterJordan, vice president of the Hanover NAACP. She attributed the racist language to a problematic culture tolerant of racism and slow to condemn it.
The group sued the school district in August, arguing that the names of Lee-Davis High School and Stonewall Jackson Middle School violate the constitutional rights of black students. The suit alleges that the names create an unequal learning environment and force student-athletes to endorse the Confederacy.
Lawyers for Hanover schools sought to dismiss the case, saying a twoyear statute of limitations on the claims has passed. The county named both schools more than 50 years ago.
U.S. District Judge Robert Payne has yet to rule officially on the school district’s motion, but said in a March hearing that it could be too late for the NAACP’s claims.
The trial was set to begin Monday, but in April the court delayed it indefinitely.