Homicide in Iowa might be a result of a hate crime. The victim’s mother pleads for justice.

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The horrific death of 44-year-old Michael Williams of Grinnell, Iowa might be a result of a hate crime.  

The body of Williams was found burned in a ditch north of Kellogg on September 16. The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) was asked to assist in the solving of this crime and they are treating this as a homicide. At this point, law enforcement is not ruling out a possibility of this being a hate crime. According to the 2010 U.S. Census Grinnell population was 2% African American and 91.9% white and the death of Williams comes after summer that magnified the violence against Black Americans.  

The victim has family in Syracuse, N.Y. and they have organized a GoFundMe page to help them return the body of Williams to New York for burial.  On the GoFundMe page Williams’ mother made the following statement:

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“On September 11th or 12th my son, Michael Williams, 44, was brutally murdered in Grinnell, Iowa. As if taking his life was not bad enough, on September 16th the perpetrators of this crime moved his body to Jasper County, dumped him on the side of the road, then set his body on fire. Our family is thankful for the concerned citizen that noticed the fire and called 911. We are thankful that authorities were able to make positive identification. Please help me bring my son home to his birthplace, Syracuse, New York for a proper Homegoing Services and burial…. I thank you in advance for your donations and sharing my story. Thank you! #BringMichaelHome #JusticeForMichaelWilliams #OurGentleGiant”

DCIE is working on solving this crime along with Jasper County Sheriff’s office, Grinnell Police Department. Poweshiek County Sheriff office, Marshall County Sheriff’s and Iowa State Patrol. Anyone who can provide any information to help this horrific crime are asked to call Grinnell Police Department at (614) 623-5679 or the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office at (614) 792-5912.  

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