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Jan 26, 2009 10:58 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press

Another noose found hanging in the woods of Sagaponack

Jan 26, 2009 10:58 AM

A second noose has been found hanging in the woods in Sagaponack, and the Southampton Town Police Detectives Division and the Suffolk County Police Hate Crimes Unit are investigating.

The noose was found Sunday morning hanging in a tree along a Long Island Power Authority right-of-way off Town Line Road, in roughly the same location as a noose discovered in October 2008. A resident who was out walking his dog on Sunday discovered the noose and, wishing to remain anonymous out of concern for the safety of his family, alerted an employee of The Southampton Press, who took photos and video of the noose and reported the matter to police.

The matter was reported to East Hampton Town Police, who contacted Southampton Town Police just before 2 p.m. after determining that the noose was actually hanging just west of the town line, in Southampton Town. Police responded and removed the noose, which was hanging from a tree not far from a popular hiking and biking trail known as the Paumanok Path.

A horseback rider had similarly discovered a noose hanging from a power line in the same area on October 28, 2008. At the time, it sparked a debate, because there was no official police policy in Southampton Town for treating such incidents, which, although potentially an attempt at racial intimidation, did not involve a specific victim.

In November, the Town Board approved a resolution asking Police Chief James Overton to develop a policy on such matters, and less than a week later Chief Overton had developed a policy that hands such cases over to the Suffolk County Hate Crimes Unit, making that unit the primary investigators. The latest discovery will be the first to be investigated under the new policy.

As of November 1, 2008, New York State law makes the display of a noose on “any building or other real property, public or private, without permission of the property owner” an act of aggravated harassment in the first degree.

When the noose was discovered in October, neighbors, who call the wooded area along the Southampton-East Hampton border “no man’s land,” said the area is often used for illegal dumping and ATV and motorcycle riding, and some people use it as a shooting range. Evidence of bonfires can frequently be found. “This is like the land of the lost,” one woman said.

Town Police ask anyone with information concerning the incident to call the Town Police Detectives Division at (631) 728-5000 or the Crime Tips Hotline at (631) 728-3454, or to send an e-mail to crimetips@southamptontownny.gov. Police say all information will be kept confidential.

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this is obviously a disgrace and most likely the work of bored teenagers - but someone has got to turn these folks in. someone knows who did it. at the same time, perhaps we should ignore it in the media and try not to instill the perception of this aging albeit tragic symbol of hatred that a noose represents.
By hamptons surfer (79), southampton on Jan 27, 09 6:13 AM
Why does the noose have to be a racial thing? What crime has been committed? More crime has been done by the illegal dumpers than a piece of rope.There have been no signs of racism around the noose nor has it been directed at anyone. Maybe its someones sad last plea for help.
By BigL11946 (29), Hampton Bays on Jan 27, 09 9:40 AM
Good Point Big - I am wondering why the man who found the noose called someone at the southampton press before he called the police?
By jacks (70), hampton bays on Jan 27, 09 3:20 PM
The northern boundary of Sagaponack is the LIRR track bed. This noose was discovered far north of that point. If I lived in Sagaponack I'd be very unhappy about this mistake!

to be more accurate, the location of this noose was in an unincorporated section of Southampton Town.
By Bill (68), North Haven on Jan 28, 09 1:10 PM
In light of the election of the first african-american president {as well as the unprecedented violent racial hate crime in patchogue} i think that THIS IS OUTRAGIOUS! clearly the noose is racial in meaning. WHAT OTHER MEANING DOES A NOOSE HAVE? Clearly the new noose is a reaction to the Obama landslide.

the perpetratrors need to be aprehended and put up on charges of a hate crime. if they are young 'bored teenagers' then they need to be re-educated and rehabilitated! first these kids start ...more
By Malik from Captree (6), Sag Harbor on Jan 29, 09 2:25 AM
It would make sense for the Town to establish a BIAS FREE ZONE by the power line trails. this might show that government is serios about fighting hate crimes, and does not take them lightly.

The Bias Free Zone would include a sign, with the standard lines:

"This marker represents the community's recognition of the importance of establishing an open-minded and respectful attitude among all the residents of southampton town"
By Malik from Captree (6), Sag Harbor on Jan 29, 09 2:47 AM
Malik - its not a hate crime - there is no crime - it sounds like you need to keep an open mind
By jacks (70), hampton bays on Jan 29, 09 8:58 AM
I know this area well.

Maybe something like this will get enough publicity so that the police have some reason to patrol this area for illegal Motorbike/ATV riding, Illegal Shooting and Garbage Dumping instead of just looking the other way and ignoring it (tacitly endorsing it)
By C Law (354), Water Mill on Jan 29, 09 10:59 AM
Malik your comments are ridiculous without even having any facts. And are you racist? You must be to assume that it is "white teenagers" that have done this. Being that the woods are located next to a "white suburb" maybe it was teenagers of color that did it? It's because of people like you that there is no racial harmony, so quick to point a finger. Maybe point the finger at yourself for causing racial tension with no just cause.
By BigL11946 (29), Hampton Bays on Jan 29, 09 6:11 PM
Ever think that the person that did this did it to get a rise out of people? In this day and age we should take the higher road and not play into the wants of the person who did this for what ever reason they did it. In this day and age, as Barak O’Bama is our president we should not let trivial things like these destroy the unity that is finally pulsating through America again. Is it more of a crime to hang a noose in a tree or is it more of a crime to be judged before having the facts?
By jellyfish jam (5), Hampton Bays on Jan 29, 09 6:17 PM
All the problems in this country not to mention the world and a piece of rope hanging from a tree makes print! If racism was the point why hang it from a tree in the middle of the woods by the power lines?
Wouldn’t Montauk Hwy make a much better racial impression? Why be that insecure and paranoid about a stoned teenagers mindless creation? When you should be worried about your 401K, Home values, savings accounts, Social Security, Solders abroad black and white dying each day, ...more
By Dragharbor1980 (9), North Haven on Jan 30, 09 10:56 PM
Where is a crime committed? Can someone not display a conferserate flag? Legally, do we all have to like each other? No one was threatened by this noose hanging in middle of no where. Everytone uses racism or hate crimes as a convenient excuse when they dislike someone who down't agree with them. What isn't acceptable is trying to tell eople how to think. Isn't this wat the Nazis did.
By Walt (292), Southampton on Feb 1, 09 11:10 AM
"It would make sense for the Town to establish a BIAS FREE ZONE by the power line trails. " ......... If we spend tax payers money on signs that will solve the problem, right? Just like the signs that you often see these days when entering certain towns that read "This is a domestic violence free zone", or a sign near a school that reads "This is a drug free zone" .............. do you people really think that this actually works? Do you really believe that someone reads a sign like this and says ...more
By The_Realist (6), Sagaponack on Feb 3, 09 11:38 AM
Um, maybe someone was planning on committing suicide, and put up a noose ahead of time. The police keep taking the nooses down, and this poor dude never gets to kill himself. Keep the noose up, let the guy off himself. Then we'll know who did it.

Creepy though.

BTW, if we hang George W. Bush in effigy using this noose, is THAT racist, too?

By Undertow (64), Southampton on Feb 3, 09 12:33 PM
"BTW, if we hang George W. Bush in effigy using this noose, is THAT racist, too?"

Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton first.
By The_Realist (6), Sagaponack on Feb 5, 09 4:34 PM