Hate speech painted on library named for Emanuel AME victim

On Monday, Mar. 13, the Cynthia Graham Hurd Library, named for a victim of the Mother Emanuel AME shooting, was vandalized with hateful slurs. (Photo courtesy of Matt Drobnik via the Flickr Creative Commons).

On Monday, Mar. 13, racist and homophobic graffiti defaced the Cynthia Graham Hurd Library, W.L. Stephens Aquatic Center, and a house on Playground Road. The three cases of vandalism occurred within one mile of each other, but authorities have not determined whether the events are connected. All three incidents used inappropriate language and slurs to target several groups of people including black women, the police and the LGBTQ community.

Library workers found the graffiti across the pavement and several columns as they arrived early Monday morning. By the end of the day, Charleston County Facilities removed the vandalizm.

At the Playground Road location, slurs painted the side of the house, the garage, and the vehicle of the homeowners. The W.L. Stephens Aquatic Center graffiti, found over the weekend instead of Monday morning, featured tags across a basketball court and storage shed.

The library was recently renamed to honor Cynthia Graham Hurd, a victim of the Emanuel AME Church shooting that occurred on June 17, 2015. Hurd worked as the manager of the library for many years before her death – her overwhelming presence at the library added a potency to the slurs, and spurned a quick and hasty removal within the same day of discovery.

All events of vandalism are still under investigation.

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