Bubba Wallace is not a victim of a hate crime as the FBI announced the apparent noose found in Wallace's garage at the Talladega Superspeedway in Lincoln, Alabama was there last fall. However, the FBI didn't dispute it was a noose, and NASCAR is looking to prove it to everyone that thinks it was a hoax. NASCAR recently released a photo of the pulled rope tied like a noose to confirm an investigation was needed.
NASCAR President Steve Phelps held a conference call after the FB investigation concluded and said the rope in Wallace's garage was the only one tied like a noose. While there might not be a hate crime targeted at Wallace, Phelps is not sorry for getting the FBI involved.
NASCAR just released a photo of the garage pull rope that was fashioned into a noose at Talladega. pic.twitter.com/gRAUAJoYv2— Jeff Gluck (@jeff_gluck) June 25, 2020
"To be clear, we would do this again," Phelps said. "The evidence we had, it was clear we needed to look into this." Phelps added, "this is the best result we could hope for. [...] It is fantastic to hear from the FBI, definitively, this is not a hate crime." Wallace has also weighed in on the FBI's investigation and said it's definitely a noose.
"I was relieved, just like many others, to know that it wasn't targeted towards me," Wallace said on the TODAY show. "It's still frustrating to know people are always going to test you and always just going to try to debunk you. That's what I'm trying to wrap my head around now, from saying I'm fake and all this stuff, and that I reported it when it was news that brought to me and information that was brought to me that was already reported. So I was following suit, but all in all, it's another day." The "noose" incident came on the heels of NASCAR banning Confederate flags at races. This decision was made when Wallace said he was looking to have the flags banned so all spectators would be comfortable.
"There's going to be a lot of angry people that carry those flags proudly, but it's time for change," he said. "We have to change that, and I encourage NASCAR — we will have those conversations to remove those flags."