Vermont’s attorney general held a press conference on Monday to announce he won’t file charges against the white supremacist accused of stalking and harassing the state’s sole Black lawmaker.

That same white supremacist would crash the press conference moments later and proceed to heckle former state Rep. Ruqaiyah “Kiah” Morris, (D-Bennington) during what was supposed to be a peaceful gathering.

Max Misch (right) was under a year-long protective order in 2016 after attacking then-Rep. Kiah Morris in a series of racist online messages.

According to Seven Days Vermont, the conference immediately devolved into chaos when Bennington resident Max Misch burst into the room as Morris, who resigned from her post in September after suffering years of racial harassment, answered a TV reporter’s question about Attorney General T.J. Donovan‘s investigation into her claims. Misch had been slapped with a year-long protective order in 2016 that prevented him from contacting Morris after he attacked the lawmaker in a series of racist tweets and online messages.

The harassment didn’t stop there, however. Bennington Police Department records showed police responded to complaints by Morris or her family at least 16 times over the last two years. Morris said the incidents ranged from a home invasion, teenage pranksters banging on their windows and doors, to swastikas being painted on trees near her home.

“For two years, we lived in my husband’s childhood home, feeling unsafe, never sleeping peacefully because we had to be vigilant,” the former legislator said during Monday’s press conference. “We did everything we were told to do. We reported as we should, held nothing back and trusted in a system that was insufficient and inept at addressing and repairing the harm done.”

Witnesses said Misch entered the room wearing a black long-sleeved shirt emblazoned with an image of alt-right icon Pepe the Frog. His presence sparked shouts of, “No, no, no!” and “Out!” the second he arrived, Seven Days Vermont reported. Some community members even started singing and used a jacket to block Misch.

“Why is this asshole allowed to come in here?” someone in the crowd yelled.

“Because it’s America,” another attendee responded “We have to listen to everyone, whether we like it or not. But we don’t have to put up with it.”

Donovan struggled to rein things in as Misch was escorted to the exit by law enforcement officials. Getting back to the business at hand, Donovan insisted there simply wasn’t enough evidence to prosecute Misch for his actions and that his “vicious and hateful” language is considered free speech.

“Speech is protected, even when it’s offensive, hurtful, and demeaning …,” the attorney general asserted at the Temple Beth El Synagogue on Monday. “In regard to the threats against Kiah Morris, I find [that] the statements presented in this matter, though racist, insulting and degrading, but are not subject to prosecution.”

In his ruling, Donovan added that no Vermont court has specifically weighed whether the racist online messages sent to Morris by Misch could be construed as “true threats.”

He continued: “The question here is whether the messages, in context, were communicating a serious expression of an intent to harm Ms. Morris or her family. The fact that a number of messages were directed at her role as an elected official raises the issue of whether they were intended to express political opposition through the use of hyperbole and insult.”

Rather than file charges, Donovan plans to release a 10-page report detailing Morris’ racial harassment. He’s also launching a new statewide “Bias Incident Reporting System” for local police and prosecutors to share incidents of racial bias, station WNYT reported.

Tabitha Pohl-Moore, president of the Rutland-area NAACP, criticized Donovan’s decision and said it seemed “very wrong” not to hold Misch accountable for his racist behavior.

Misch wasn’t the only one at the gathering with a vendetta against Morris, however.

Unsuccessful Republican House candidate Kevin Hoyt also showed up in protest, saying he “called bulls–t on Morris!” As reported by Seven Days Vermont, “Hoyt is a political critic of Morris who in September sought a protective order against Morris’ husband, James Lawton, for social media posts by Lawton that Hoyt claimed caused others to falsely accuse him of being a Nazi.”

After nudging his way through the crowd, Hoyt asserted that “as a political opponent who was accused of being a Nazi, I think we’re hearing one side of the story. I was called a Nazi, I was called a white supremacist. Obviously, racism exists in Vermont … I question to what degree, though.” Vermont, which has been called the “whitest state in America,” has a black population of approximately 1 percent.

Despite the chaotic scene, Morris stood tall in the face of her harassers and the attorney general, realizing that, yet again, her concerns had fallen on deaf ears.

Watch more in the video below.

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