Central Texas prosecutor fired for racial remarks

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Associated Press

Posted on June 12, 2014 at 5:09 PM

Updated Thursday, Jun 12 at 5:09 PM

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A Central Texas prosecutor has been fired for comments he made in dismissing a prospective juror who was a member of the NAACP, comparing the juror's membership to white supremacy.

Travis County prosecutor Steve Brand made the comments last month during jury selection for a robbery trial. Transcripts show he rejected the juror because she was an "activist" and had posted on her Facebook page a link to "The Negro Motorist Green Book," a guide to safe travel for African-Americans in the Jim Crow era.

The Austin American-Statesman reports (http://bit.ly/1hLH3gu ) Brand said he would take the same approach with a white juror because "we wouldn't want a white activist or a white supremacist."

Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg says the comments were racially insensitive.

Brand's lawyer, Tom Nesbitt, described Lehmberg's punishment as "bizarre."

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Information from: Austin American-Statesman, http://www.statesman.com

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