Daytona Police found a strange note near a fire-damaged police cruiser parked near a local mosque on Sunday, according to The Washington Post.
The note, scribbled on loose-leaf notebook paper in black marker read, “Black Lives Matter A. Sterling P. Castile f*ck the police.”
Authorities are still investigating and have not gathered any evidence that shows it was left by someone associated with Black Lives Matter.
Officers responded to the scene around 2:30 a.m., after neighbors called in a loud explosion. Thankfully, no one was harmed in the explosion. The van was used as a decoy to deter unwarranted attacks as retaliation in the wake of the Orlando Pulse Nightclub shooting.
Police Chief Mike Chitwood told the News-Journal that the department began parking the vehicle in front of the Islamic Center after last month’s mass shooting at an Orlando nightclub. The goal, he said, was to deter anyone planning to target Muslims.
In an interview with News-Journal, Chitwood said the note does not reflect the relationship between law enforcement and the local community. However, he did voice serious concerns.
“I really do believe in my heart of hearts that we have a really great rapport with our community overall,” he said. “They know that if there’s a problem, they can come and talk to us. But there is a radical, small percentage that I think is trying to drive a wedge between all of us.”
Chitwood went on to say he believes outsiders who want to further the divide are using tactics similar to ISIS.
“Find the disenfranchised folks that don’t want to fix things the right way, and have them be fanatical in their attacks. And it’s sad. Certainly not the world I want my grandkids to grow up in,” Chitwood said.
According to Chitwood, the assailants used a Molotov cocktail, which caused over $2,000 in damages. Police are using surveillance footage to determine who the suspect could be, but have no leads as of yet.
In the wake of the recent police shootings of two Black men in Louisiana and Minnesota, as well as retaliation efforts against officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge, America is forced to examine serious dialogue that includes the intersections of police brutality, community policing in minority communities, gun control, and mental health evaluations for veterans.
Police are still investigating the origins of the note.
SOURCES: News-Journal, The Washington Post | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty, Twitter
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