Mississippi’s first openly-gay mayoral candidate, a 34-year old African-American man, has been found murdered, about thirty miles from where his car, driven by another person, crashed, police say. Marco McMillian was a Democratic candidate for mayor of Clarksdale.
“A person of interest was in custody, but had not been formally charged, Will Rooker, a spokesman for the Coahoma County Sheriff’s Office, told ABC News.”
Police did not identify the person of interest.
Rooker would not confirm or deny whether the person of interest was the injured person found crashed in McMillian’s car on Tuesday and airlifted to a Memphis, Tenn., hospital.
Jarod Keith, McMillian’s campaign spokesperson, told The Associated Press McMillian’s campaign was noteworthy because he may have been the first openly gay man to be a viable candidate for public office in Mississippi.
As of now, McMillian’s death is not being investigated as a hate crime, Rooker told ABC News affiliate WPTY in Memphis.
Keith told ABC News Radio he did not think McMillian’s death was politically motivated or a hate crime.
The Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Institute tweeted: “Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Marco McMillian, one of the 1st viable openly #LGBT candidates in Mississippi.”
Jane Wishon, a member of the Board of Directors of Marriage Equality USA, noted via Facebook:
I ask you to think of Marco McMillan – a man who possessed more courage in his little finger than most will ever know. Marco had just agreed to join the Board of Marriage Equality USA – we will miss him. He told me that he ‘came out’ to model to the African American church going community what it means to be an out gay black man.
Image via Facebook
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