Sunday, October 11, 2009

Racist Graffiti Writer Close to Arrest

It was a despicable act.. almost unbelievable in the 21st Century.

And especially in Kingsport.. in our hometown.

Racist graffiti, probably done under the cover of darkness.. surely, no sane person would risk getting caught spray-painting things of this nature in broad daylight.

Now, the person who wrote racist graffiti on a Kingsport overpass in April of this year, is apparently close to justice.

"Our detectives have diligently been working on this," says David Quillen of the Kingsport Police Department. "As a result, we have finally obtained an arrest warrant in this case."

The graffiti was painted on the bridge supports underneath the Reservoir Road overpass on Interstate 26, within site of, and at the entrance to the Meadowview resort complex and the new YMCA.

The area is considered to be the modern entrance to Kingsport.

At the time, Ramon Willis and his family, in town to visit relatives in Riverview, was passing by, was shocked and appalled at what they saw.

"When we got out and looked at it," says Mr. Willis, "this white man came running up to us and said his daughter's boyfriend did it. He also said the boyfriend had done it before right in this same spot, and what shocked us, was, we saw where it had been painted over before, a couple of times right there."

Kingsport Police responded and took evidence pictures themselves, and Public Works employees cleaned up the graffiti as soon as they were notified.

The scars of what passersby had witnessed, remained.

"I'm thinking, 'you all still got this stuff going on here, in this town, right NOW?" Mr. Willis said he thought at the time. "Just knowing that somebody thinks bad enough about black people to put this up in public and get away with it."

Apparently, this particular culprit will not get away with it, according to police.

"We take this kind of vandalism very seriously," says Mr. Quillen. "We hope to pick up the individual who did this in the next few days."

Your website will continue to follow this story, and update you on its progress.