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Sonoma County sheriff’s deputies received a phone call Monday morning about a noose found hanging from a tree at the Sonoma Raceway and are investigating the case as a potential hate crime.

The noose was found by a raceway employee around 8 a.m. Saturday near the site’s old administration building, according to the sheriff’s office.

Sonoma County Sheriff's Office A noose was discovered hanging from a tree at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. Monday, June 22, 2020. The incident sparked a hate crime investigation.

The rope was weathered and seemed to have been hanging for an extended period of time. The sheriff’s office said a raceway tenant remembered seeing the rope hanging from the tree seven to eight years ago after a model airplane crashed, but it was not tied in a noose back then.

Sheriff’s detectives are looking through video surveillance footage for leads in the case and the FBI is also investigating.

The sheriff’s office said in a news release:

“We understand why this case is disturbing for many people. We take potential hate crimes very seriously and want everyone to feel safe in Sonoma County.”

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