Moral Low Ground

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Florida Hate Crime Suspect Walton Henry Butler to Cops: “I Only Shot a Nigger”

A Florida man charged with attempted murder and hate crime for allegedly shooting an African American man in the head expressed disbelief over his arrest, telling officers that he “only shot a nigger.”

The Port St. Joe Star reports that Walton Henry Butler, 59, of Port St. Joe shot 32-year-old Everett Gant, who is black, in the head with a .22 rifle on Monday night. Gant had confronted Butler about an incident in which the latter used a racial slur to describe a child living in their apartment complex.

According to investigators, Butler had been calling other children in the complex racist names in recent days.

When a friend of Gant’s told him about what had happened, he went over to Butler’s apartment to confront him about his racist actions. Instead of conversation, Gant got a bullet between his eyes. After shooting Gant, Butler shut his door and left his victim lying on the ground bleeding. He then called 911, finished cooking dinner and sat down to eat.

WJHG reports that when Gulf County Sheriff Joe Nugent arrived at the scene of the shooting, Butler acted as if he were being inconvenienced. “He was brought to the investigative unit where he was interviewed and basically admitted to shooting the victim and said he shot a, just used a racial slur, and said that is what he shot and acted like it was no big deal or anything to him,” Nugent told WJHG.

Gant is in guarded condition at Bay Medical Center and expected to survive. Butler is locked up in Gulf County Jail.

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