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NAACP leader coming to Spokane for march

The head of the nation’s largest civil rights organization will lead a march in Spokane on Sunday to commemorate the 43rd anniversary of the assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

Benjamin Todd Jealous, president and CEO of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People will speak at the Demand Justice and Promote Peace rally and march from the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena to Riverfront Park.

The 3 p.m. event, sponsored by the NAACP Alaska, Oregon and Washington State-Area Conference and the Spokane Branch, follows the King Day march on Jan. 17, which was marred by the discovery of a bomb along the march route.

Earlier this month, the FBI arrested Stevens County resident Kevin Harpham, who has been charged with attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction and possession of an unregistered destructive device.

A trial date of May 31 has been set for Harpham, who is in custody at the Spokane County Jail.

According to an NAACP statement, Spokane was chosen for Sunday’s march because Washington and North Idaho “are well-known for their history of white supremacist activities.”

The organization “plans to take direct action by showing NAACP support for peace freedom, civil and human rights in an environment where it would appear that excessive racial hatred and discontinuity still exists.”



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