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The U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Alabama and the FBI said in a joint statement that the noose had been in Wallace’s garage stall since the October race at Talladega in 2019.
While it’s now clear that the rope was tied into a noose long before Wallace’s Number 43 car occupied garage, Wallace is still certain that it was a noose like both the FBI and NASCAR had previously said. He was asked by CNN's Don Lemon if he’s ever seen a garage pull tied like that.
Wallace said Tuesday night he’s “pissed” that some are attacking his character following the determination that no federal charges will be brought after a noose was discovered in his garage stall at Talladega.
Wallace, the only Black driver racing full-time in NASCAR, was informed by series president Steve Phelps early Sunday evening that a crew member on Wallace’s team had discovered the noose. Wallace — who isn’t allowed to go to the garage because of NASCAR’s Covid-19 social distancing protocols — said Phelps called him and told him that he wanted to talk in person.
“The look that he had on his face alerted me in a way I’ll never forget as well and I’m still thinking ‘OK what did I do, let me know,’” Wallace told Lemon.
“ … The conversation I had with Steve Phelps I would say, and I’m speaking for him, probably one of the hardest things if not the hardest thing he’s ever had to tell somebody. Tears running down his face. Choked up on every word that he was trying to say, the evidence he brought to me that a hate crime was committed, quote unquote.”
“And I immediately thought my family was in danger and so I was about ready to call my mom and dad and make sure everybody was OK. But it was in the garage stall where our car was at so I was kind of taken aback and not really comprehending everything.”
Wallace, along with the rest of NASCAR will be heading to Pennsylvaina to race in the Pocono Organics 325 on Saturday, June 27.
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