Sheriff investigating apparent noose found on Sonoma Raceway property

Photo: Sonoma County Sheriff's Office.

Sonoma County Sheriff's Office is investigating a possible hate crime after what appears to have been a noose hanging from a tree was found on Sonoma Raceway property over the weekend. 

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.

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.

The Sonoma Raceway, located at Highway 37 and 121, was holding a Sears Point Racing Experience event on Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

"Sonoma Raceway takes this incident very seriously and is dedicated to operating a facility that is welcoming to everyone," the statement read. The Raceway is cooperating with the investigation. 

The sheriff's office responded to the crime scene Monday at 10:20 a.m.

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

Bay City News reporter Tilly Friedlander contributed to this story.