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Woman pleads guilty to Ozark cross burning

Pamela Morris admitted she lied during an investigation into the burning of a cross in Ozark by her son, Steven Joshua Dinkle
A former secretary of the Ku Klux Klan chapter in Ozark pleaded guilty Thursday to committing perjury before a federal grand jury.

Pamela Morris admitted she lied during an investigation into the burning of a cross in Ozark by her son, Steven Joshua Dinkle, a Klan member who also pleaded guilty to the burning on May 8, 2009.

Morris admitted that she was an officer of the KKK and that her testimony denying any connection to the organization was false according to the office of U.S. Attorney George Beck. The prosecutor said Morris admitted she knew Dinkle committed the cross burning.

“Morris lied under oath blatantly and repeatedly to hinder an investigation into a cross-burning that was committed to intimidate an entire community,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Jocelyn Samuels for the Civil Rights Division.

“Ms. Morris lied to the grand jury in an attempt to protect herself and to protect a cross burner," Beck said. "When someone testifies in court they swear to tell the truth. Unfortunately, Ms. Morris lied. For our system of justice to protect the rights of all, those who testify before the grand jury must provide accurate and honest information. If someone fails to tell the truth while under oath, we will prosecute them.”

Dinkle pleaded guilty on Feb. 3, 2014 to hate crimes and obstruction of justice related to the cross burning. He was sentenced to two years in federal prison.

Another defendant, Thomas Smith, pleaded guilty to similar charges and is scheduled to be sentenced August 19.

A sentencing date for Morris has not been set.

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