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Police say race not factor in killing of Black man in Iowa

Michael Williams, 44, who was found dead in a ditch in rural Jasper County on September 16, 2020.
Michael Williams, 44, who was found dead in a ditch in rural Jasper County on September 16, 2020.(Courtesy: Williams Family via KCCI)
Published: Sep. 23, 2020 at 1:13 PM CDT
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KELLOGG, Iowa (AP) - Police in Iowa have charged four people in the strangulation death of a man whose body was found burning last week in rural central Iowa ditch.

The Iowa Department of Public Safety says 31-year-old Steven Vogel, of Grinnell, was arrested Tuesday in the death of 44-year-old Michael Williams, of Grinnell.

Police acknowledged that the killing of Williams, who is Black, had led to fears that the Syracuse, New York, native may have been targeted because of his race. But police said Williams and Vogel, who is white, were well acquainted and a police statement says investigators have found “no evidence” that race was a factor.

It wasn’t immediately known whether Vogel had a lawyer who could comment on his behalf.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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