Three African-American University at Albany students who allegedly falsely reported a hate crime have now been given probation and community service.
Former students Asha Burwell and Ariel Agudio are the final two to face sentencing for the alleged false hate crime report. Both received three years of probation and 200 hours each of community service for the January 30, 2016, incident. The judge waived jail time saying that the pair had faced “significant consequences” already, according to Fox News.
Along with student Alexis Briggs, Burwell and Agudio alleged that a group of white men attacked them on a bus. The women charged that they were called the N-word and verbally assaulted. They also engaged in a physical confrontation with some of the bus riders but claimed the others started the incident.
The so-called hate crime was whipped into a frenzy on the Albany campus and even sponsored the Twitter hashtag campaign, #DefendBlackGirlsUAlbany. At one point, NFL players and rap singers joined the activism to decry the attacks on the three students. Even Hillary Clinton jumped in to make political hay off the purported hate crime.
There's no excuse for racism and violence on a college campus. https://t.co/ADVghl4iEv -H
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) February 4, 2016
The reported attack also sparked protest marches at the school featuring a large number of political activist speakers, especially those from the local Black Lives Matter chapter.
But it wasn’t long before police began reviewing cellphone video from other passengers on the bus only to find that the three women’s tale was not supported by the video evidence. Less than a month passed before authorities charged the students with filing a false hate crime report.
The three initially insisted that they were innocent of the charges and refused any plea deals in the case.
But, eventually one of the trio, Alexis Briggs, admitted to the hate crime hoax in court.
Last year, Briggs pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct, apologized for lying, and was handed probation and 100 hours of community service.
All three were ultimately expelled from the school.
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