Written by: @kristenshylin_
“I don’t want to recount this, but I was almost the victim of an attempted lynching,” civil rights activists Vauhxx Booker said.
Booker, who is also a member of the Monroe County Human Rights Commission, said he called 911 on Saturday night after being assaulted, injured and threatened with a noose by a group of white men at Lake Monroe.
The activist said he and a friend were on their way into the public park when they encountered a large, drunk white man wearing a confederate flag hat. The man started following Booker, insisting that he was on private property. Booker assured him that he had permission to be on the property, but the man continued to follow him.
When Booker reached the event organizer and explained his encounter, he learned that the man was not the property owner.
But to avoid further conflict, Booker advised his friends to take the public beach way, but later found that a group of white people purposely blocked it off with a boat and their ATVs.
The individuals claimed that it was their land, and when others tried to cross, they yelled “white power.”
Booker said he tried to smooth things over with the group, but they became aggressive when he approached them.
“Two of them jumped me from behind and knocked me to the ground. I tussled with the two, and another joined in, then two more,” Booker said.
Booker recalled being attacked by five people. He described being pinned to a tree as his attackers beat him on his head and ripped his hair off.
“They held me pinned and continued beating me for several minutes, seemingly becoming more and more enraged as they kept trying to seriously injure me and failing,” the victim said.
The group also attempted to break his arms. Booker recalled hearing his attackers say, “We’re going to break his arms.”
They even yelled racial slurs and asked their friends to “get a noose.” Booker said that one of the men jumped on his neck during the attack.
“I could feel both his feet and his full bodyweight land hard against my neck,” he continued.
Luckily, Booker’s friends and strangers intervened to help save Booker’s life.
Booker suffered a minor concussion, abrasions and bruising and had patches of hair missing, following his attack.
A witness told the Bloomingtonian that when the officers from the Indiana Department of Resources arrived at the scene, they refused to arrest Booker’s attackers.
Booker posted unedited clips of the incident on Facebook and is seeking justice against his attackers.
“It hurts my soul and my pride, but there are multiple witnesses, and it can’t be hidden or avoided,” he said.
The department released a statement to the Bloomingtonian stating that the incident is currently under investigation.