Alaska bistro defaced by racist graffiti, reference to Trump
HOMER, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska restaurant has been defaced by racist graffiti that included a reference to President Donald Trump.
The owners of Wasabi’s Bistro near Homer in southern Alaska found racist messages that had been painted Wednesday night or Thursday morning, the Homer News reported Thursday.
Police say the owners reported the orange spray paint messages that included a racist epithet, “Leve (sic) our town” and “Go back to Affrica (sic)” on the building’s exterior walls.
Among the messages photographed by the newspaper is one that says, “Trump 2020.”
Colt Belmonte, who is white, owns the business with his wife Dali Frazier, who is black, according to the newspaper.
Belmonte said the vandalism is “saddening” and that the property has suffered previous vandalism including a gunshot hole in a wall and damage to a car.
“I hate to make it political, but obviously it is,” Belmonte said of the Trump slogan, adding that the situation has deteriorated since the 2016 election.
“I think our current presidency is letting these people have a voice,” he said. “They feel empowered; they feel whatever it is that they feel.”
Belmonte said he grew up in Homer and spent time away before moving back with his family in 1997.
He believes the harassment comes from a minority within the community, but the ongoing racist attacks make them consider leaving.
“We don’t want to be here anymore,” he said.
Police say the vandalism is being investigated as a criminal mischief crime for damage to property.
Information from: The Homer (Alaska) News, http://www.homernews.com