By David McCormack, dailymail.com

A businessman in suburban Detroit is under fire from unhappy neighbours after hanging a Confederate flag and nooses at his two properties in the area.

A noose on display in Livonia, MI.

A noose on display in Livonia, MI.

Robert Tomanovich, who owns Robert’s Discount Tree Service in Livonia, Michigan, first hung a noose from a tree and a Confederate flag, printed with the slogan ‘I ain’t coming down,’ on a fence at his home.

When neighbors complained, a second noose appeared on a tree outside his tree-cutting business which operates at a second property on the same street.

Tomanovich, 55, has denied his actions are racist, although an employee has admitted that the second noose was a deliberate move to antagonise locals…

When the local TV network attempted to speak to Tomanovich on Friday he refused, although his wife Lindy tried to explain the noose as a tribute to a dead friend.

‘Robert has a friend that died in that way (hanging himself), and that’s in memory of his friend,’ she told WXYZ. ‘There’s no crime in hanging a noose.’

An unnamed employee was quick to take credit for the noose at Tomanovich’s business. ‘Screw ’em… We’re gonna put more up,’ he said…

On Monday, Tomanovich spoke to the Daily News and said accusations of racism were ‘stupid.’

‘I know black guys, I have black friends. We’re all laughing at this stupidity. Do you know how many white guys were hung back in the day? This isn’t racist. But all of a sudden it’s out of control.’

Livonia_flag

He said he had put up the Confederate flag because ‘I like the colors’.

Tomanovich also said he has since taken down the nooses and flags, but refused to apologize.

‘I don’t need to defend this to nobody. My business is doing very well,’ he said. ‘I only want this story to get bigger. I want people to know I’m not a racist.’

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