[Updated (3/30/2015, 7:55 p.m.) with a response from Mr. Harris’s lawyer.]
Federal prosecutors filed civil-rights charges on Friday against a former University of Mississippi student who they say hung a noose and a Confederate flag around a campus statue of James Meredith, who became the university’s first black student, in 1962.
Graeme Phillip Harris was charged with one count of conspiracy to violate civil rights and one count of using a threat of force to intimidate African-American students because of their race or color, according to a news release from the U.S. Department of Justice. The incident took place in February 2014; university officials say Mr. Harris withdrew later in the year.
A lawyer representing Mr. Harris told The Clarion-Ledger on Monday that he had been wrongly accused. “Graeme Harris did not tie a rope around the neck of the James Meredith statue, and the student who admitted to that action was not indicted,” the lawyer, David G. Hill, said in a written statement.