On May 2, a man in Santee, California went to a local Vonns grocery store in what’s clearly a Klu Klux Klan hood.
It is likely that this was some sort of attempt to adhere to public safety precautions, albeit a questionable choice as the pointed mask has deep roots in white supremacy. A shopper who took the photos shared with CNN that store employees asked the man to remove the hood, or leave, but were ignored until he reached the cash register. As of May 12, it has been decided that the man will not be charged with a crime. He has remained anonymous.
The images sparked nationwide outrage, as the hood is a symbol of deep racial intolerance. San Diego’s Sheriff Department “looked into the incident” to determine whether or not they would press charges.
“This was a disturbing incident for our associates and customers, and we are reviewing with our team how to best handle such inappropriate situations in the future,” said a representative from Vonns in a statement.
The unidentified man told investigators that wearing the infamous hood was not a racist attack. “It was a mask and it was stupid,” he said in a news release to CNN.
The sheriff’s department determined that there was not sufficient evidence to charge the man with a crime.