A former student government president is suing online trolls for their part in harassing her with racist messages online. The agreement made Tuesday will resolve the claim made by Taylor Dumpson, 22 who is a graduate of American University against The Daily Stormer publisher Andrew Anglin and an Oregon man named Evan lanes McCarthy, the associated press reported.
In a lawsuit filed in April, Dumpson accused Anglin, who runs the neo-Nazi site, of orchestrating the online harassment she experienced last year after being targeted in a hate crime on campus.
Dumpson also sued Brian Andrew Aide over the harassment.
The young women’s attorney had previously asked a federal court in Washington, D.C to rule in Dumpson favor due to Anglin and Ade’s failure to respond to the suit, according to NBC News. Neither are involved in Tuesday’s settlement.
Dumpson’s problems began in May 2017 after she was inaugurated as the university’s first-ever Black student government president only to find that someone had hung bananas from strings tied into nooses across the Washington campus the same day she started her term in office. The bananas also contained hateful messages. A police investigation didn’t turn up any suspects, and University president Sylvia Burwell said that “all credible leads have been exhausted”.
Anglin posted an article about the incident on his neo-Nazi website, which included links to her Facebook page as well as the student government Twitter page. In response, McCarthy tweeted a photo of bananas with the caption “READY THE TROOPS,” and later tagged Dumpson in a separate post that read “OOGA BOOGA,” the lawsuit alleges.
McCarthy was tweeting under the screen name “Byron de la Vandal” at the time, likely a reference to white nationalist Byron de la Beckwith, who assassinated civil rights leader Meager Evers in 1963, The Eagle reported.
Dumpson alleged it was Anglin who directed his readers to bully her online, making her the victim of a vicious online campaign of racially motivated harassment designed to intimidate her and make her fear for her safety. The now 22-year-old law student said the entire ordeal has caused her to suffer from a post-traumatic stress disorder.
Under the terms of the settlement, McCarthy will apologize directly to Dumpson via a video conference and in writing and attend and last one year of anti-hate training sessions with a licensed therapist. Additionally, he must complete at least four academic courses on race and gender studies and a minimum of 200 hours of community service, AP reported.
Dumpson said she wants her lawsuit to “hold people accountable for their bigoted actions” and believes the settlement will bring increased awareness to racial bias issues.
Her attorney, Kristen Clarke, said the case should have a “chilling effect” on racist who spew hate while hiding behind a computer screen.