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Crime and Courts

Justice Dept. Considers Whether Johnson County Shootings Were A Federal Hate Crime

Attorney General Eric Holder says Justice Department prosecutors will investigate whether a federal hate crimes was committed in  Kansas shootings over the weekend.

Frazier Glenn Cross, the man suspected in killing three people  in Overland Park on Sunday, has been booked into the Johnson County jail on a preliminary charge of first-degree murder.

Authorities say there is enough evidence to warrant a hate-crimes prosecution in the shooting spree that killed three people at a Jewish community center and Jewish retirement complex near Kansas City.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, Cross has long been an outspoken white supremacist and was once a “grand dragon” of the Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.

In a statement on Monday, Holder said he has instructed the department to provide all available support to state and local authorities to determine whether the shootings outside of Kansas City involved federal hate crimes laws.

The attorney general says the senseless acts of violence at two Jewish facilities are all the more heartbreaking because they were carried out on the eve of Passover.

Holder says the Justice Department will do everything in its power to ensure justice is served in the case on behalf of the victims and their families.