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Sheriff’s Office investigates potential hate crime in Kelley

David Mullen
Staff Writer
Kelley's watertower. Tribune file photo

Story County Sheriff’s Office has opened an investigation into an incident on July 4, when someone left feces and toilet paper under a tree at the home of an African American woman in Kelley.

Willa Klamte-Carrillo, the victim, said she believes the incident is a hate crime.

“I’m 63 years old, I’m a veteran of the United States Army, and I’ve never been racially (attacked like this),” she said.

Deputies from the sheriff’s office have not confirmed whether it is a hate-crime, but are actively investigating the incident, said Story County Sheriff’s Lt. Gary Backous.

“We did take a report and it’s currently listed as criminal mischief in the city of Kelley,” Backous said. “It didn’t come in as a hate-crime and information from the reporting party has no idea who the suspect might be, so there’s not a whole lot that we can confirm that it might be related to race.”

Klamate-Carrillo said this isn’t the first time a racially motivated incident occurred in Kelley during her 14 months in town.

She said that last August, when she was working part-time at R Place Pub and Pizza, a customer referred to her as “Aunt Jemima.”

She said she quit the job because she “didn’t want to put up with that crap.”