Racists hack Brooklyn Center council meeting and launch obscenities at Black members

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Racists hacked into a working session of the Brooklyn Center City Council on August 10, 2020 and hurled racial obscenities at the Black members of the council which includes the city's first Black mayor, Liberian born Mike Elliott. Photo: Courtesy CCX Media

Brooklyn Center police are investigating an August 10 hacking of a virtual city council work session where racial obscenities were hurled at the council’s members of color. The city’s mayor is Liberian-born Mike Elliott, the first Black mayor of that city. April Graves and Marquita Butler are the other two Black council members. The council has five members, which includes the mayor.

Northwest Community Television’s CCX Media reports that the Zoom meeting that started normally quickly changed when two men hacked into the meeting and launched a diatribe of derogatory comments at the Black council members. The hackers took control of the screen and wrote Nazi symbols over it. The city was able to take control within a few minutes, covered the offensive language, and muted the audio.

“They came on the call to cause chaos and hurt and to those people of color that was on the call specifically, the council members,” said Graves.

Mayor Elliott told CCX Media’s Sonya Goins that “I know this was specifically an attack seemingly on me, directed me, but it was an attack on all of us. I saw it as someone coming into the public space, and that represents the city of Brooklyn Center and all of the residents of Brooklyn Center collectively.”

Brooklyn Center officials have since stopped using Zoom and instead rely on WebEx for their meetings.

About Tom Gitaa Gitaa, Editor-in-Chief

Born and raised in Kenya's coastal city of Mombasa, Tom is the Founder, Editor-in-Chief and Publisher of Mshale which has been reporting on the news and culture of African immigrants in the United States since 1995. He has a BA in Business from Metro State University and a Public Leadership Credential from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. He was the original host of Talking Drum, the signature current affairs show on the African Broadcasting Network (ABN-America), which was available nationwide in the United States via the Dish Network satellite service. On the show, he interviewed Nobel laureates such as 2004 Nobel Peace prize winner, Professor Wangari Maathai, the first woman from Africa to win the peace prize and heads of states. Tom has served and chaired various boards including Global Minnesota (formerly Minnesota International Center), the sixth largest World Affairs Council in the United States. He has previously served as the first Black President of the Board of Directors at Books for Africa. He also serves on the boards of New Vision Foundation and the Minnesota Multicultural Media Consortium. He has previously served two terms on the board of the United Nations Association. An avid runner, he retired from running full marathons after turning 50 and now only focuses on training for half marathons.

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