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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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New Spokane NAACP president on VP-to-be’s arrest: ‘Not our place to ban anyone’

UPDATED: Mon., Dec. 21, 2020

Just after she was formally sworn in Monday night as the new president of Spokane’s NAACP chapter, Kiantha Duncan addressed what she called “the elephant in the room.”

The elephant was the news hours earlier that Le’Taxione, who was once up for second vice president with the organization, was arrested Thursday on domestic violence charges. The Spokane NAACP officially removed Le’Taxione from the executive committee Friday.

Also known as Ernest Carter, Le’Taxione was charged on suspicion of domestic violence assault after he reportedly bit a female on the left side of the face and attempted to strangle her on the evening of Dec. 14, according to court documents. He is in the Spokane County Jail on $500,000 bond.

While expressing that she does not in any way condone violence against others, Duncan said Monday night that she is open to getting the victim and Le’Taxione the healing and the services they need to move forward.

“It’s not our place to ban anyone off to an island off to themselves,” she said. “We don’t get the right to do that.”

Monday night’s meeting formally introduced Duncan as the chapter’s new president, while the group’s other members – past and present – were sworn in as well. Duncan previously served as a vice president of the chapter.

“I hope that you all realize that it was my goal to ask to welcome the people who are at the top of their game to this table, not because I have expertise in the areas that they do, but because I don’t,” she said, “and I know that they are going to do the work that is necessary … to lead us in the direction that we need to be heading.”

Duncan replaces Kurtis Robinson as president. Robinson will serve as first vice president. The position of second vice president, once intended for Le’Taxione, is vacant at this time.

Robinson said the members of the executive committee will put the Spokane NAACP into a “new gear” toward accomplishing its mission.

“We are the preeminent Eastern Washington champion for equity and justice that we were meant to be,” he said. “And that was a baton that we were given, and we are on that path today.”

Twelve at-large members were sworn into service Monday night. One other at-large member, Mason Maxey, was not present for the meeting.

Those present were sworn in by the Rev. Walter Kendricks, pastor of Morning Star Baptist Church and president of the Spokane Ministerial Fellowship.

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