The Daily Tar Heel
Printing news. Raising hell. Since 1893.
Monday, May 27, 2024 Newsletters Latest print issue

We keep you informed.

Help us keep going. Donate Today.
The Daily Tar Heel

Incident reports provide more detail to defacement of the Unsung Founders Memorial

Unsung Founders

The Unsung Founders Memorial, erected in 2005, is on McCorkle Place at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Update 5:00 p.m.: According to the incident reports of the two vandalism incidents, the Unsung Founders Memorial was vandalized with permanent marker and urine, while the art installment outside of Hanes Art Center was written on with marker. 

UNC Police will not release the text of the graffiti or other information that could impede the criminal investigation, UNC Police spokesperson Randy Young said in an email to the DTH.

The defacement of the Unsung Founders Memorial was found by an on-duty police officer and the defacement of the Hanes Art Center installment was reported to an on-duty police officer by a passing motorist, Young said.

UNC Police have issued warrants for two suspects. Barricades have again been placed around the Unsung Founders Memorial.

Update 10:30 p.m.: The racist language targeted graduate students Maya Little and Lindsay Ayling, two student activists involved in demonstrations against Confederate monument Silent Sam, according to tweets from both Little and Ayling. 

Ayling's tweet said the police informed both students that they were threatened but were not given any details. Ayling also noted that although Little has been found not guilty of charges related to demonstration, she still cannot legally visit the Unsung Founders Memorial. 

Two individuals defaced the Unsung Founders Memorial early Sunday morning, writing "racist and other deplorable language" on it, according to an email sent to the University community on Sunday afternoon from interim Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz. 

UNC Police are working to obtain a warrant for the arrest of one of the involved individuals who is affiliated with a group known as Heirs To The Confederacy. The person was captured on surveillance tape and identified.  

The individuals were on campus at approximately 1:30 a.m. Sunday and wrote racist language on the memorial, according to the email. UNC Police contacted the facilities department and the monument was cleaned soon after. 

An installation outside of Hanes Art Center was also vandalized with hateful language and racial slurs, the email said. Both of these incidents are being investigated. 

"These events challenge not only our most fundamental community values, but also the safety of our campus," the email said. "Lawless behavior will not be tolerated, and those found responsible will be held accountable for their actions."

Randolph County resident Lance Spivey, co-founder of Heirs To The Confederacy, along with others visited campus on March 16 with weapons. Spivey carried a camouflage-skin pistol on his hip. 

To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.

Although it is a felony under North Carolina law to possess a firearm on educational property, UNC police issued warnings to the individuals. No arrests were made at the time. 

Nearly a week before the March 16 incident, Spivey wrote a blog post about his views regarding the connection between Confederate monuments and freedom.

“I am willing to die for what I believe; I am more so ready to kill for it,” he wrote in the post. 

UNC police are reviewing the video to see if they can identify the other individual involved, according to the email. 

"If you receive threats or ever feel your safety is threatened, including on social media, contact police by dialing 911," the email said.