A White Iowa woman who admitted she ran over and tried to kill two children with her car because of their race was sentenced in federal court to 25 years in prison, reports NBC BLK.
Nicole Poole Franklin, 43, pleaded guilty in April to federal hate crime charges for attempting to kill a 12-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl in December 2019.
The Department of Justice said she targeted the minors “because of their race and national origin.” The boy is Black and the girl is Hispanic.
According to prosecutors, Poole Franklin was driving her Jeep Grand Cherokee in Des Moines on Dec. 9, 2019, when she saw the 12-year-old walking on the sidewalk with his sibling, also a minor.
“Upon seeing the children and believing that the victim was of Middle Eastern or African descent, Poole Franklin drove her vehicle over the curb towards both children, striking one of them,” the Justice Department said.
The victim suffered cuts and bruises but did not go to the hospital.
Poole Franklin sped from the scene and saw the 14-year-old victim walking near Indian Hills Junior High School in Clive about 30 minutes later. Believing the girl was Hispanic, prosecutors said Poole Franklin drove her Jeep over the curb, struck the child and drove away.
The girl hobbled to the school for help and was taken to the hospital to be treated for serious injuries, including a concussion and bruises, court documents state.
Poole Franklin was arrested later that same day after police responded to an incident at a gas station. According to court documents, she allegedly tried to steal items from a convenience store and began yelling racial slurs when she was confronted by an employee.
It wasn’t until days later, while still in custody, that police connected Poole Franklin to the hit-and-runs.
Poole Franklin told police during questioning that she ran over the boy because she believed ”he’s just like ISIS” and “he’s not supposed to be there and he’s going to take me out,” according to court documents.