The Lincoln Memorial was vandalized today, but security cameras at the monument managed to capture the perpetrator.
U.S. Park Police have reviewed surveillance footage and have determined that a vandal did indeed deface the Lincoln Memorial with green paint overnight. They are now seeking a person of interest, sources told News4.
The monument was closed early Friday morning after joggers discovered that the Lincoln statue had been defaced with green paint. It was splattered in the lap of the Lincoln statue, on one leg, and around the base.
The National Park Service maintenance crews managed to clean up the mess, and U.S. Park Police are investigating it as an act of vandalism.
The Lincoln Memorial was opened roughly 12 hours later for visitors. Some of the paint is still present, and crews will continue cleaning it over the weekend. The memorial is normally open to the public 24 hours a day.
There didn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to the Lincoln memorial vandalism this morning. The green paint was simply sloshed around the monument. No symbols or words were written with it.
Still, National Mall vandalism is incredibly rare with only three other cases occurring over the last 20 years. Joggers who discovered the vandalism said that the act was incredibly disrespectful.
“I have no idea who would want to do something like that,” said Scott Arndt, an early-morning runner. “To me, it’s defacing America. It’s not just defacing the Lincoln Memorial, but it’s something against all of America.”
“People come from all over the world, and to show that they can’t get into one of our national landmarks because somebody vandalized it is kind of a black mark on our country,” opined jogger Keith Gillespie.
The vandalism also sparked a massive social outcry against the perpetrator.
Don’t vandalize National Monuments. Seriously, people. #RespectLincoln
— The GoalieNet (@TheGoalieNet) July 26, 2013
— wusa9 (@wusa9) July 26, 2013
I mean, think about it. Not only did he free the saves, he was a top notch vampire slayer. #RespectLincoln
— Jake O’Donnell (@Jakeodnnll) April 14, 2012
What do you think should be done about the Lincoln Memorial vandalism?