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Suspected murderer indicates "hatred" for white race, law enforcement

web posted September 4, 2010

AIKEN – A man wanted in connection to two recent murders in Aiken County as well as arson is also suspected in the brutal beating of a female Richmond County business owner on Wednesday night who remains in critical condition as of Friday. Information obtained on Friday shows racial hostility could also be playing a roll in the choice of his victims. Franklin Wright, 55, of Aiken County is considered to be on foot, armed, and “extremely dangerous”.

Wright is described as a black male, 6 feet tall and weighing 195 pounds. No current clothing description is available.

According to a national broadcast obtained on Friday, Wright is “armed and dangerous” and “writings found in his home indicate hatred for (the) white race and law enforcement”. The broadcast also stated, “approach with caution, aggressive response to confrontation should be anticipated. Subject is prone to violence and has (an) extensive history”.

Wright was last seen in the Hephzibah, Ga. area Thursday night and has been reported to have a handgun. If he is spotted, the public is advised not to approach him and instead should call 911 to report his whereabouts.

The Aiken County Sheriff’s Office has already issued arrest warrants for Wright in connection to the August 11, murders of 38-year-old Shalamar N. Byrd, of Bream Ave. in Augusta Ga. and 75-year-old Yana Peters Schenker of Aiken. Both women were strangled and then their bodies set on fire and discovered the same night in Aiken County. Both women were white.
No official press release from area law enforcement mentions the racial overtones and they are not indicating his crimes as “hate crimes” at this time. However, they do consider Wright to be desperate to avoid capture.

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