A memorial statue of George Floyd in Brooklyn was vandalized less than a week after it was unveiled. The New York City Police Department is now looking into the vandalism as a hate crime carried out by a white nationalist group.
The memorial, unveiled on Juneteenth, was spray-painted by four individuals around 3:40 a.m. on Thursday. Floyd’s face was painted with black paint, and the words “PATRIOTFRONT.US” were painted in white on the base.
Patriot Front has been designated a white nationalist hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force is investigating the incident. Police have released surveillance footage of the suspects and are asking anyone with information to come forward.
On 6/24/21 at 3:40 AM, four individuals defaced a George Floyd monument at 1545 Flatbush Ave, Bklyn. Black spray paint was used to deface the sculpture and cover text on the pedestal. “PATRIOTFRONT .US” was stenciled in white spray paint on the pedestal. INFO? ☎️1-800-577-TIPS pic.twitter.com/bnBwEraOWg
— NYPD Hate Crimes (@NYPDHateCrimes) June 25, 2021
The statue, located on Flatbush Avenue, was vandalized just one day before the sentencing of Derek Chauvin, the disgraced former Minneapolis police officer who was convicted of murdering Floyd. Chauvin was given a sentence of 22 and a half years on Friday.
ABC7 reports that on Thursday, Newark, New Jersey, officials announced that a 700-pound bronze statue of Floyd outside City Hall was also defaced. The statue’s face was also painted black with the words: “LIFE…LIBERTY VICTORY PATRIOTFRONT.US”.
So far, no arrests have been made in either case.