After being chopped off from the ankle up, only the cleats of Robinson’s statue remained at a public park in Wichita, Kansas.
As authorities searched for the perpetrators, they reviewed surveillance footage showing several people entering the Jackie Robinson Pavilion in McAdams Park. Around midnight on Thursday, the group removed the statue before placing it in a pickup truck and taking off, reports ABC.
Then, on Tuesday morning, Jan.31, the Wichita Fire Department responded to a call about a fire in Marcus Garvey Park. Upon arriving and putting the garbage can fire out, they discovered the remains of the legendary Brooklyn Dodger statue.
Unfortunately, it was all but gone and “is not salvageable at this time,” according to Wichita police spokesperson Andrew Ford.
During a press conference last Friday, Wichita Chief of Police Joe Sullivan spoke about how frustrated he was about the hateful act. Namely because Jackie Robinson was the first Black Major League Baseball player, and the statue’s disappearance took place right before Black History Month.
“I’m frustrated by the actions of those individuals who had the audacity to take the statue of Jackie Robinson from a park where kids and families and our community gather to learn the history of Jackie Robinson, an American icon, and play the game of baseball,” Sullivan said during a press conference last Friday. “This should upset all of us. What troubles me even more is that the theft occurred just before the beginning of February, which marks the start of Black History Month.”
The heartbreaking news of the destroyed statue comes on Jan. 31, which is also Robinson’s birthday.
See how upset social media is about the ordeal below.
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