Police Investigate Burning Of D.C. Churches’ Black Lives Matter Signs As Hate Crimes
Written by Black Voices on December 13, 2020
Police are investigating as potential hate crimes the destruction of Black Lives Matter indicators at church buildings in Washington throughout violent pro-Donald Trump demonstrations Saturday, officers introduced Sunday.
Somebody tore down banners supporting the anti-racism motion from at the least three church buildings Saturday night time as 1000’s of maskless “Cease the Steal” protesters marched by means of the nation’s capital, falsely claiming that the election was stolen from Trump.
The Metropolitan Police Division mentioned Sunday that it’s “conscious of those incidents” and inspired anybody with info to name 202-727-9099 or textual content 50411.
“We take these offenses severely, and we’re at the moment investigating them as a potential hate crimes,” the division mentioned in a press release to HuffPost.
The professional-Trump demonstrations, which included members of the Proud Boys far-right extremist group, turned violent when proponents clashed with counterprotesters within the streets, leading to at the least 4 individuals being stabbed.
Greater than 100 metropolis law enforcement officials have been deployed into the gang, with some utilizing chemical spray as they tried to separate individuals, The Washington Submit reported. Police arrested 33 individuals throughout the in a single day unrest, the division mentioned.
Professional-Trump demonstrators tore down a Black Lives Matter signal and set it on fireplace at Asbury United Methodist Church, the oldest Black church in Washington that also sits on its unique website, church officers mentioned Sunday.
Rallygoers that night time additionally reportedly tore down Black Lives Matter indicators at close by Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church and Luther Place Memorial Church.
“We’re a resilient individuals who have trusted in God by means of slavery and the Underground Railroad, Jim Crow and the Civil Rights Motion, and now we face an obvious rise in white supremacy,” the Rev. Ianther M. Mills, a senior pastor at Asbury United Methodist Church, mentioned in a press release Sunday.
The destruction on Saturday was “paying homage to cross burnings,” Mills mentioned.
“Sadly, we should level out that if this was a marauding group of males of shade going by means of the streets, and destroying property, they’d have been adopted and arrested,” Mills mentioned in his assertion. “We’re particularly alarmed that this violence is just not being denounced on the highest ranges of our nation and as a substitute the leaders of this motion are being invited to the White Home.”
“Cease the Steal” protests erupted Saturday in a number of cities throughout the nation, together with Atlanta and St. Paul, Minnesota. No less than one particular person was shot throughout clashes between Trump supporters and counterprotesters in Olympia, Washington.
Trump appeared to encourage the demonstrations, which have been fueled by his relentless peddling of misinformation and lies in regards to the election.
“MOST CORRUPT ELECTION IN U.S. HISTORY!” Trump tweeted Sunday.
The White Home didn’t instantly reply to HuffPost’s request for remark in regards to the violence that unfolded throughout Saturday’s unrest.
Election officers nationwide, together with a number of Republicans, have declared the elections this 12 months honest and devoid of widespread irregularities. Nonetheless, Trump and his allies have continued to falsely declare the method was “rigged.”
Democrats and a few Republican lawmakers have urged Trump to concede and cease his divisive rhetoric, warning that his feedback may result in violence.
“It has to cease,” Gabriel Sterling, a Republican and the voting implementation supervisor within the Georgia secretary of state’s workplace, mentioned in a information convention on Dec. 1. “Mr. President, you haven’t condemned these actions or this language.”
“Cease inspiring individuals to commit potential acts of violence,” Sterling added. “Somebody’s going to get damage. Somebody’s going to get shot. Somebody’s going to get killed.”
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