Ferguson Police are back in the media in a negative light over the Michael Brown case — this time regarding some insensitive remarks. Raw Story reports that a memorial dedicated to the slain Missouri man had been destroyed, but the police department in the St. Louis suburb refuses to investigate who did it, but that’s not all. Officers referred to the memorial as “just a pile of trash.” Shockingly, the department’s so called public relations department is responsible for the remark that many are perceiving to be callous.
The memorial was destroyed sometime in the middle of the night by a vehicle. It had been directly run over by an unknown driver, but it’s not known for sure if this was a deliberate attempt to desecrate the memorial, or if it was simply an accident. Photos of the destroyed memorial were posted to Twitter by more than one user.
— Justin (@jay_myles2) December 26, 2014
I can’t believe some destroyed the Canfield memorial on Christmas. Hate is deep. (via @jay_myles2) pic.twitter.com/XumtQ23gMT
— deray mckesson (@deray) December 26, 2014
The Washington Post reportedly contacted the Ferguson Police regarding the presumed desecration of the Michael Brown memorial, but was not greeted pleasantly by the PR department, who appeared to scoff at the idea of even being contacted over the destroyed display. Officer Timothy Zoll is who reportedly made the insensitive remark, when asked if the department would investigate what may or may not have been intentional vandalism.
“I don’t know that a crime has occurred. But a pile of trash in the middle of the street? The Washington Post is making a call over this?”
KPLR News 11 reports that this is not the first time that the Michael Brown memorial on Canning had been destroyed. Back in September, it was destroyed by a fire, which members of the community believed to be intentional. CBS News reported in September that the incident was under investigation. A month prior to the arson incident, a police officer was accused of allowing his dog to urinate on the memorial.
It seems a little strange that the Ferguson Police Department would blatantly refuse to investigate something that community members fear to be intentional, especially after the same memorial had been targeted before in a possible arson. Tensions are high enough in the Missouri neighborhood, and of course, don’t forget that another shooting has taken place in the same area.
Antonio Martin, 18, was shot Tuesday night by a police officer after he allegedly brandished a weapon. While the death of Antonio Martin can’t be compared to the death of Michael Brown, police in Missouri are still at the center of more than one controversy involving young black men. So, referring to memorials as “trash in the middle of the road,” is not coming across very well to those who are already scrutinizing police in the state.
[Photo credit: Free Public]