Residents of Mount Gilead, a town of about 1,100 people in central North Carolina, are reeling from a police sting operation that netted 59 arrests the morning of Election Day. All of those arrested were African Americans, all for possession of drugs, alcohol and guns. Some there are questioning the timing of the bust and believe it was an attempt to intimidate African Americans from showing up at the polls that day.
But North Carolina Department of Public Safety spokesperson Patty McQuillan said she doesn’t believe it had anything to do with elections. “I didn’t even know it was Election Day,” she said when reached by phone.”