Actor weighs in on Kroger attacks, calls out attorney general

Woods took to Twitter bring the attack to Holder's attention. (WMC Action News 5)
Woods took to Twitter bring the attack to Holder's attention. (WMC Action News 5)
(WMC) - The attacks caught on camera Saturday night in a Kroger parking lot are being called horrifying and disgusting. Now, Actor James Woods is calling them a hate crime. 

Woods took to Twitter on Tuesday to call out U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, tweeting:

"This is a direct challenge to Eric Holder: Are you, Sir, going to Memphis, TN to address the Kroger racial hate crime? #holderchallenge"

On Wednesday Woods posted: 

"Since you choose to be an empty suit, Mr. Holder, let me say this regardless: the more you ignore this racism, the more you endorse it."

The tweets by Woods have been retweeted more than 5,000 times and have been shared for his more than 150,000 followers to see. 

Two of the attack victims were white and three of them were black. But the question that many have asked: Is what these teens did a hate crime? 

Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich says these attacks are not being considered as a hate crime. 

"The facts do not fit the law of the state of Tennessee," Weirich said. 

Under Tennessee's "Civil Rights Intimidation Statute" a hate crime is committed when a person's civil liberties are taken away. If the FBI deems it a crime of "bias" they could come in to investigate. 

Attorney Claiborne Ferguson says the way the state laws are written, these kids could get more time for an aggravated assault than they would a hate crime. 

"If these children are charged with aggravated assault or aggravated assault in concert with each other, they are facing more time just on that charge," Ferguson said. 

WMC Action News 5 spoke with the father of one of the victims in the video and he told us that in his opinion what happened is not a hate crime. He called the attacks "equal opportunity hate."

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