The white, six-foot-tall Ku Klux Klan member with a long red beard who was allegedly threatening to hang Black people in an Atlanta neighbourhood has turned out to be a 30-year-old Black woman, according to police.
Terresha Lucas was arrested and charged with eight counts of making terroristic threats for allegedly leaving "racially charged" handwritten notes in mailboxes around the suburb of Douglassville, about 23 miles west of the city.
Douglasville Police Department said in a press release that the notes claimed to be written by a white KKK member from out of town.
"The notes threatened to burn their houses down and kill them and said that they didn’t belong in the neighbourhood," said Detective Nathan Shumaker.
The first note was found on 21 December last year, with at least seven Black residents in the Brookmont subdivision reportedly receiving the letters in February, March and finally in September. Families in the neighbourhood lived in fear as the year passed without any arrest.
“I received one two days ago and I was alarmed at what I read,” a Douglasville father told CBS46 News in March.
“The letter is using the N-word, talking about the KKK, hanging people, killing kids, killing whole families, and setting houses on fire,” he added.
The summer passed without any letters until Labor Day, when police said they obtained a search warrant after speaking to neighbourhood residents and reviewing doorbell camera footage.
It is alleged that evidence was found connecting Ms Lucas to the letters during the search, Mr Shumaker said.
They also allege the letters were all written by a single person, with consistencies found in handwriting, tone and verbiage.
Ms Lucas made her first court appearance on Thursday morning and was denied bond, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office reportedly told Fox News.
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