A Fayette County grand jury refused Jan. 25 to charge two college-age men who hung an effigy of Barack Obama from a tree last fall on the University of Kentucky campus, their lawyer said.
The grand jury dismissed charges of second-degree burglary, theft by unlawful taking and disorderly conduct against Hunter Bush, 21, of Lexington, and Joe Fischer, 22, who graduated from UK in December, lawyer Fred Peters said.
In an interview, Fischer and Bush expressed remorse and said they were not trying to make a statement about race. They said they were making a political statement in response to news reports in October that an effigy of Sarah Palin was hung at a West Hollywood, Calif., home.
Hunter Bush, 21, and Joe Fischer, 22, spoke at a news conference in the office of their attorney, Fred Peters. Bush said he now realizes the effigy was inflammatory.
"It was just a political prank," said Bush, a Republican. "We just weren't thinking of other people's feelings."
-- Lexington Herald-Leader, Jan. 28.