Iowa hate crimes suspect got breaks after earlier arrests

Nicole Marie Poole Franklin (Courtesy image)
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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa woman charged in a string of racially-motivated attacks this month managed to avoid prison in recent years after arrests for previous violent crimes and threats.

Nicole Poole Franklin is charged with intentionally driving her SUV into a Hispanic girl and a black boy near Des Moines-area schools in separate hit-and-run crashes on Dec. 9. She's also charged with using racial epithets that day at a gas station.

In 2017, Poole Franklin was charged with stabbing her then-boyfriend while she was on probation. But a felony charge was dismissed after the alleged victim refused to cooperate.

Charges alleging she assaulted and harassed another boyfriend in 2018 were dismissed after he also declined to cooperate.