Mural of Arthur Ashe defaced with white nationalist insignia
Posted on Thursday, October 21, 2021 | 2:50 p.m.
Updated 49 minutes ago
RICHMOND, Virginia (AP) – A mural depicting black tennis legend and Richmond, Va. Native Arthur Ashe has been defaced by badges associated with a white nationalist group, police said Thursday.
Officers called to the city’s Battery Park Thursday morning discovered the mural had been vandalized, police said.
“Hate will not be tolerated in Richmond,” Police Chief Gerald Smith said in a press release. “We are asking for the public’s help by being another pair of eyes on the murals and monuments in Richmond.”
This is the second time this week that a mural in Richmond has been defaced with such markings, police said. Police will monitor monuments and murals throughout the city. If the damage caused by the vandalism is $ 1,000 or more, the person or persons responsible can be charged with a felony, police said.
The teams painted on the vandalism and the city immediately contacted Sir James Thornhill, one of the artists who had worked on the mural in 2017, WRIC-TV reported. Officials have expressed hope that the mural can be repainted in the coming months.
“Those responsible for this, and other shameful and cowardly like-minded acts, will be held accountable,” Mayor Levar Stoney said in a statement. “Be clear: hatred will not be tolerated in our city. “