Man charged in noose threat against co-worker

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - September 4, 2008 William Gould, 62, of Philadelphia, was charged with interfering with employment by threat of violence. He hung the noose Aug. 11 at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, where he worked as an electrician, authorities said.

The victim, also an electrician, saw the noose when he went to retrieve a drill from his locker. He associated the noose with the lynching of blacks and began fearing for his safety, prosecutors said.

"It is utterly disheartening to see such ethnic intimidation occur in our country," acting U.S. Attorney Laurie Magid said in a statement.

Gould had complained about the minority training program on numerous occasions to co-workers and hospital executives, allegedly saying the program was unfair, authorities said.

He admitted hanging the noose when questioned by an FBI investigator, according to court documents.

Gould made his initial court appearance Wednesday after being arrested. He did not yet have an attorney but was released on bail.

If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.

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