'Hate is not welcome in Henrico’: Leaders condemn KKK flyers distributed to residents

Updated: Aug. 27, 2019 at 11:07 AM EDT
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GLEN ALLEN, Va. (WWBT) - Henrico County leaders and the NAACP are condemning flyers promoting the Confederate Knights of the Ku Klux Klan that were distributed at homes in Glen Allen over the weekend.

The flyers were found Sunday morning by residents of Bluebell Court and the surrounding area off Mountain Road.

“Imagine waking up on a Sunday morning and going to pick up your newspaper and the first thing you see is a zip-lock baggie and you open it up and it has this hate-filled message in it,” said Henrico County Manager John Vithoulkas. “No one should experience that.”

“We came home from vacation and my neighbor across the street, he said did you get your gift?” said Caroline Scarborough, of Glen Allen. “I said what gift, because he got our mail for us, and he said look in your yard. We picked it up and it was like a bag of rocks, like a recruitment thing."

These KKK recruitment flyers were found at roughly 100 homes in a Glen Allen neighborhood...
These KKK recruitment flyers were found at roughly 100 homes in a Glen Allen neighborhood Sunday. (Source: NBC12)(NBC12)

County leaders said the flyers were placed at the mailboxes or in the driveways of approximately 100 homes in the area.

"I didn't read all of it, because I just threw it away,” Scarborough said. “I didn't even want it in my house."

The recruitment flyers for the Confederate Knights of the Ku Klux Klan are filled with racist and anti-Semitic propaganda.

“Hate is not welcome in Henrico County,” Vithoulkas said. “It will not be tolerated, and our residents will not be intimidated.”

Vithoulkas along with Henrico Board of Supervisors Chairman Tyrone Nelson joined the Henrico Chapter of the NAACP at a news conference Tuesday to condemn the distribution of these flyers.

Henrico County Manager John A. Vithoulkas and Henrico NAACP President Raiford Beasley will hold a news conference at 1...

Posted by Henrico County Government on Tuesday, August 27, 2019

“This is an open, inclusive, loving community,” Vithoulkas said. “The message that these flyers are pushing will find no fertile ground to grow here.”

Rai Beasley, President of the Henrico Chapter of the NAACP, called out the use of Bible verses by the person or people responsible.

“The first two commandments of God is love,” Beasley said. “So that sort of supersedes the other stuff that they tried to pull out of the Bible to get their message across."

"They're not going to change who I am,” Scarborough said. “They're not going to change this neighborhood either."

“Any way you look at it, we bleed the same color, red, we came from the same place,” said Jamar Davis, whose father lives in the neighborhood. “We put on our clothes the same as they do. There’s nothing they can do or try to do to move us out or push us on to somewhere else.”

Scarborough said the neighborhood that was targeted is a diverse one, with a handful of homeowners having lived here for decades.

“It’s ridiculous and it’s childish,” Davis said. “Let people live.”

County officials believe the flyers were placed in the driveways of the homes overnight Saturday.

"No wonder, they’re still hiding behind sheets,” Scarborough said. “They’re still hiding behind sheets, that’s why they’re doing it in the dark of night.

“We condemn the cowardly way they were distributed, in the middle of the night, under the cover of darkness,” Vithoulkas added. “... These folks may have picked the wrong County to distribute this kind of information, and it’s not information... it’s garbage.”

Henrico Police are asking anyone with information about the person or people responsible to call (804) 501-5331. While Vithoulkas said this act is not criminal in nature, those responsible could face consequences.

“The purpose is to shame them for the act they have done,” Vithoulkas said. “Ultimately the charges that are put forward would be up to the Commonwealth’s Attorney, but let’s say at the very least you have a charge of littering, you would have 100 different charges of littering for this individual or these individuals.”

County leaders encourage Henrico residents to be vigilant and watch out for their neighbors.

According to Vithoulkas, the flyers distributed in the Glen Allen neighborhood are similar to ones reported in Hanover County over the weekend.

Hanover County officials said they received one phone call Sunday morning regarding flyers/packages found in a subdivision of Bruce’s Estate. When deputies responded, they found approximately 15 packages. The sheriff’s office is investigating and ask anyone with information to call them.

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