Civil rights leaders want meeting with Hawks

Atlanta Hawks ownership managing partner Bruce Levenson cheers from the stands in the second half of Game 4 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Indiana Pacers, Saturday, April 26, 2014, in Atlanta. The Pacers won 91-88 to even the series at two games apiece.  

John Bazemore/AP

ATLANTA (AP) — Civil rights leaders in Atlanta say they will ask for a meeting with Hawks officials after the disclosure of a racially charged email written by the basketball team’s co-owner.

The Rev. Markel Hutchins said Monday that he would ask for a meeting to discuss what he believes is a racist attitude permeating the organization.

The criticism came after Hawks co-owner Bruce Levenson announced Sunday that he would sell his controlling interest in the team, in part because of an email he wrote two years ago, offering a theory that black fans were keeping away white fans.

At a news conference Monday morning, Hutchins said he had not yet requested the meeting. It wasn’t immediately clear whether team officials had received any request.