By Alexandra Page | PoliticalWeasels.com | April 20, 2023
Malachi Robinson from Missouri, who pleaded guilty, has been sentenced to almost 22 years in prison for attempting to murder a teenager based on his sexual orientation. Malachi Robinson, who admitted to shooting the 16-year-old victim, identified as M.S., eight times using a 9mm pistol, was convicted of violating the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act.
U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes ordered Robinson to serve 262 months in federal prison
without the option of parole, as announced by the U.S.
Department of Justice. This case highlights the ongoing challenge of hate crimes that target individuals within the LGBTQ+ community.
Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke from the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department commented, "The sentencing of this individual demonstrates that he is being held accountable for his heinous and brutal hate crime against a young teenager singled out based on their LGBTQ+ identity." Clarke stressed the need to address such offenses and to work in cooperation with federal, state, and local counterparts to secure justice for those targeted due to their sexual orientation. "The sentence imposed on the defendant sends a powerful signal that those committing hate crimes against the LGBTQ+ community will face severe consequences.
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Recent FBI statistics show that hate crimes persistently target this community, and such punishments should deter potential offenders. Our nation has no room for bias-driven misconduct, and the Justice Department remains dedicated to vigorously seeking justice for victims targeted for their sexual orientation.
The events leading up to the crime started when Robinson and M.S. first met at the Kansas City Public Library. After engaging in online conversation, they agreed to meet again at the library. Security footage revealed M.S. departing the area, with Robinson following closely. Prosecutors disclosed that Robinson lured M.S. into a nearby wooded area under the guise of engaging in sexual activity. At the same time, he sent a text to his girlfriend, informing her he "might shoot this boy" due to his sexual orientation. When M.S. had second thoughts and attempted to leave, Robinson fired eight shots at the 16-year-old to kill him, before escaping the scene and leaving the teen critically injured. He later bragged about his attempt to murder the LGBTQ+ teenager to others.
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This case serves as a stark reminder of the persistent issue of hate crimes perpetrated against the LGBTQ+ community. The substantial prison sentence handed to Robinson sends a powerful message that society will not tolerate such acts, and those responsible will face the consequences. The combined efforts of federal, state, and local authorities are essential to ensure justice for all victims of hate crimes.