Attack on Equality House leaves bullet holes and anti-LGBTQ graffiti
Equality House, painted in the colors of the Rainbow Flag representing the LGBTQI community, was attacked by unknown vandals in the early morning hours this past Saturday, October 22. The Topeka Police Department and a spokesperson for Planting Peace, the non-profit organization that owns the house and the Transgender House located next door, both confirmed the attack to NCRM.
Aaron Jackson, co-founder and CEO of Planting Peace, says he was asleep at the house and was awoken by “loud banging” noises at around 1:00 AM Saturday morning. Jackson told The New Civil Rights Movement that he then requested assistance from the Topeka Police Department. Upon arrival, officers and Jackson searched the property and discovered that the Pride flags that normally decorate the grounds were scattered in the street and a derogatory phrase, “fuk [sic] fags,” was sprayed in black paint on the north side of the residence.
Jackson noted that Topeka Police were called again Monday afternoon when bullet holes and associated damages were discovered by the staff of the house. He noted that the bullet damages may have been the noises that initially had awoken him Saturday.
A spokesperson for the Topeka Police Department acknowledged Thursday evening to NCRM that although Kansas law does recognize sexual orientation under the Kansas state hate crimes law, any determination or categorizing of the incidents as a hate crime will be made after the matter is reviewed by both departmental investigators and the office of Shawnee County District Attorney Chad Taylor.
In an email statement, Jackson said: “The blatant acts of hate we experience at the Equality House mirror the acts of hate and discrimination our LGBT family experiences every day.” He added, “Planting Peace has seen an increase in hate mail, death threats, and physical acts of vandalism and violence over the past three months. According to the FBI, the LGBT community is more likely to experience a hate crime than any other minority group.”
Equality House, located directly across the street from the anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church, has been open for three years. Its sister house, the Transgender House, opened earlier this year. According to Jackson, there have been no threats or incidents during that time period until Saturday’s attack.
You can help support Equality House with a donation at Planting Peace.
Images courtesy of Planting Peace. Used by permission.
In addition to self-monitoring their own neighborhoods, residents of Oak Lawn have also begun protesting outside the Dallas police headquarters.March 11, 2016
- Body of gay Houston man discovered in the woods near burned truck, November 17, 2015
- A 16-year-old girl stabbed at Jerusalem Pride has died, August 4, 2015
- Texas man indicted in murder of lesbian daughter, girlfriend, June 19, 2015
- Prev Quill Theatre presents its first musical with Stephen Sondheim’s dark comedy, ‘Assassins’
- Next Bette Midler brings out Winifred Sanderson costume for Halloween bash, releases best-of record
- Back to top
- National LGBTQ campaign group backs transgender candidate in race agianst author of Virginia’s same-sex marriage ban
- Diversity Richmond addresses Chesterfield Police community meeting
- Plunge into the depths of high school female relationships in TheatreLAB’s production of ‘Dry Land’
- Brian Burns returns with new book detailing RVA’s history of income inequality, homosexuality and Maymont owner’s use of convict labor
- Proud lesbian, cult survivor and nurse – Chelsea Savage looks to capture Virginia House seat