After an investigation of the reported noose found in Bubba Wallace‘s garage stall at Talladega Superspeedway last weekend, the FBI has concluded that “no federal crime was committed” and that the noose had been in that stall since 2019, the FBI and NASCAR announced Tuesday, June 23.
The rope tied into the shape of a noose was found on Sunday after the race had been postponed, leading to a show of support for Wallace on Sunday by all of the drivers and crews.
“…After a thorough review of the facts and evidence surrounding this event, we have concluded that no federal crime was committed,” the FBI said in a statement.
“The FBI learned that garage number 4, where the noose was found, was assigned to Bubba Wallace last week,” the release continued. “The investigation also revealed evidence, including authentic video confirmed by NASCAR, that the noose was found in garage number 4 was in that garage as early as October 2019. Although the noose is now known to have been in garage number 4 in 2019, nobody could have known Mr. Wallace would be assigned to garage number 4 last week.”
NEWS: Statement from U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town and FBI Special Agent in Charge Johnnie Sharp, Jr. regarding the noose found in Bubba Wallace’s garage stall at Talladega. pic.twitter.com/xAkB1Xn9yl
— Jordan Bianchi (@Jordan_Bianchi) June 23, 2020
The FBI added that it will not pursue charges.
“The decision not to pursue federal charges is proper after reviewing all available facts and all applicable federal laws,” it said in the statement. “We offer our thanks to NASCAR, Mr. Wallace and everyone who cooperated with this investigation.”
NASCAR’s sanctioning body also commented on the findings.
“We appreciate the FBI’s quick and thorough investigation and are thankful to learn that this was not an intentional, racist act against Bubba,” its statement read. “We remain steadfast in our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all who love racing.”
NASCAR statement: pic.twitter.com/ECUDKCIjfZ
— Bob Pockrass (@bobpockrass) June 23, 2020
In addition, Wood Brothers Racing added a statement of their own, indicating that an employee had noticed the noose-shaped rope last fall and had alerted the team and NASCAR when Saturday night’s events transpired. The No. 21 car was assigned to the fourth garage stall last fall at Talladega.
STATEMENT ON THE COINCIDENCE OF OUR STALL FROM 2019 AND THE INVESTIGATION pic.twitter.com/SJgKus8o8T
— Wood Brothers Racing (@woodbrothers21) June 23, 2020
In the aftermath of the initial discovery, drivers showed their support by pushing Wallace’s car out to the front of the grid prior to the race.
No words pic.twitter.com/ZorYccEjFo
— Steve O'Donnell (@odsteve) June 22, 2020
Wallace went on to finish 14th at Talladega, giving an emotional interview after the race. He’ll head to Pocono Raceway this weekend for the Cup Series’ doubleheader at the triangle-shaped track.
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