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Black Lives Matter yard signs vandalized in Madeira

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Posted at 1:10 AM, Sep 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-07 18:00:24-04

MADEIRA, Ohio — A vandal defaced a series of Black Lives Matter yard signs in one Madeira neighborhood over the weekend, altering them with white paint to say “Black Lies Matter.”

The Santoiannis fixed theirs by drawing the V back in with a black marker.

Having the yard sign is just a small gesture of support for the Black Lives Matter movement, Nate Santoianni said on Sunday night, but he’s determined to keep it.

“Silence is, often, too much complicity,” he said. “If you see something you need to say something, and if putting a sign up is the least we can do, then we're going to do that.”

Other signs in yards throughout the neighborhood were also vandalized. Vandals also used white spray paint to remove the fist associated with the Black Lives Matter movement.

"Our sign is along Shawnee Run," said Ann Fogel, whose signs were also vandalized. "Walking the dog in the morning, I had noticed a couple of signs on our street had been spray painted."

She said she was also concerned the vandals had used black marker to color in the "v," indicating they'd stepped into her yard to damage the signs. In the meantime, she's fixed her signs, replacing the fist with a heart and fixing the "v" in the word "lives."

"Even thought it is out there by the street and it didn’t effect me personally or physically, it is invasive," said Fogel. "It shakes you up and it is part of the whole movement that is going on that you’ve got to think about how this makes people feel."

Madeira police are looking for the person responsible, who was caught on surveillance cameras in the area. Police said the person was wearing a white t-shirt and was seen hopping out of a black SUV. Police said the person responsible could be facing charges of criminal trespass, criminal mischief and disorderly conduct for the vandalism.

Anyone with information about the vandalism is encouraged to contact the Madeira Police Department.