Jun 23, 2020 - Sports

FBI: Noose left in Bubba Wallace's stall was not a hate crime

 Bubba Wallace  wears a "I Can't Breathe - Black Lives Matter" t-shirt under his firesuit

Bubba Wallace just before the NASCAR Cup Series Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway on June 10. Photo: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Bubba Wallace, the only Black driver at NASCAR's top level, was not the target of a hate crime after a noose was found in his garage stall at the Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama, the FBI said Tuesday.

The big picture: It was found weeks after Wallace helped push for the Confederate flag to be banned from the circuit's events and properties. The FBI said in a joint statement with the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Alabama that investigators found the noose had been in the garage since last October. "Although the noose is now known to have been in garage number 4 in 2019, nobody could have known Mr. Wallace would be assigned to garage number 4 last week," the statement said.

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