When racism is ensconced as a core principle, it is hard to give it up. From WaPo:
JENA, La. -- A teenager at the center of a civil rights controversy was back in jail Thursday after a judge decided the fight that put him in the national spotlight violated terms of his probation for a previous conviction, his attorney said.
Mychal Bell, who along with five other black teenagers is accused of beating a white classmate, had gone to juvenile court Thursday expecting another routine hearing, said Carol Powell Lexing, one of Bell's attorneys.
Instead, after a six-hour hearing, state District Judge J.P. Mauffrey Jr. sentenced him to 18 months in jail on two counts of simple battery and two counts of criminal destruction of property, Lexing said.
He had been hit with those charges before the Dec. 4 attack on classmate Justin Barker. Details on the previous charges, which were handled in juvenile court, were unclear.
"He's locked up again," Marcus Jones said of his 17-year-old son. "No bail has been set or nothing. He's a young man who's been thrown in jail again and again, and he just has to take it."
After the attack on Barker, Bell was originally charged with attempted murder, but the charges were reduced and he was convicted of battery. An appeals court threw that conviction out, saying Bell should not have been tried as an adult on that charge. . . .