UPDATE: 2:16 p.m.: Mobile Police transported the suspect accused of vandalizing the Confedeate Admiral Raphael Semmes statue in downtown Mobile to Metro Jail.
20-year-old Mitchell Bond will be charged with defacing a monument, a misdemeanor. When asked by reporters if he spray painted the monument he said “yes” and then remained silent as he was put into a squad car. Mobile Police Chief Lawrence Battiste tied Bond to the weekend protests in Mobile and said, while he supports the right to protest, it doesn’t include destroying property or harming people. The chief, who is black, was asked he had any sympathy for Bond for defacing what some see as a monument to slavery and oppression.
“My job is to stand in the gap for law and order regardless of how I feel personally about any of this here, I take my job seriously and I serve all the people of the city of Mobile,” said Battiste.
Watch the video below:
UPDATE: 10:15 AM: A two-person crew spent more than an hour power washing the monument and surrounding walkway. The words spraypainted on the sides of the statue can no longer be seen.
The statue appears to have messages spray-painted across it according to a Lagniappe photo. News 5 has a crew on their way to check out the damage. We’ll update this story as we have more information.
Thanks to Gabriel Tynes and Lagniappe Mobile for use of their images