On Halloween night, the South Texas town of Woodsboro suffered a hate crime the likes of which “The Friendly City” hadn’t encountered in over 60 years. The incident included a young black teenage boy, tazed and terrorized by three kids dressed up as Klansmen, as he was trick or treating.
The video that was obtained exclusively by Texas Monthly, shows a young Black male backing away from two figures in white sheets who were wearing droopy hoods with pointy tops and holes cut out for the eyes. They also had a taser gun which they were teasing the Black kid with.
The two figures in sheets, later identified as Rance Bolcik and Noel Garcia Jr., were being videotaped by a girl – whose identity is being withheld by authorities – as she encouraged them to surround the Black Kid – whose identity is also being withheld.
The next segment of events were reported by The Texas Monthly:
“Get closer,” she says to the Black young man as the taser gun is fired. “Surround him,” the girl says. “Surround him!” She giggles.
“Chill!” the Black teenager yells as the hooded figure with the purple device lunges for him, making a loud “Ah!” sound.
“KKK,” the girl announces.
At that point, one of the figures approaches the young Black man and zaps him. “Ooh!” he calls out, recoiling, inspiring the girl to giggle even louder.
“Chill,” the Black teenager says again, now sounding agitated. “Chill!”
Corpus Christi civil attorney Matthew Manning got wind of the incident and on November 7 he announced he would represent the victim’s family. He called the three culprits “depraved menaces” and later in a press conference said he considered the incident a hate crime. “This can’t be analyzed as kids being kids,” Manning said. “This must be seen as a purposeful crime with the intent to terrorize a Black person.”
On December 16, Rance Bolcik and Noel Garcia Jr. were arrested and indicted on two third-degree felonies: “engaging in organized criminal activity” while committing assault on a juvenile, and tampering with evidence (they had burned their costumes). A hate-crime enhancement was also added to their sentences.
Both teens face sentences of two to ten years in prison if convicted.