A Chicago family is outraged after a home security camera captured a person thought to be a city worker yanking and turning over a Black Lives Matter sign in their yard.
Dimitri Hepburn told CBS2 that he was angered when he watched the video and saw a man in a vest approach his North Side home, pluck the sign out of the yard and toss it down. When the it landed on its side, the man flipped it face-down.
“He took the time to turn it over so that it was face down,” he said. “It was … I don’t wanna say unbelievable, but shocking.”
The man allegedly tied a city of Chicago “No Parking” sign to a tree nearby before entering the family’s yard.
City employees working near the area on Friday told CBS2 they didn’t know anything about the removal of the sign. According to Hepburn, the sign had been displayed for months without issue. He believes its removal is a violation of his rights.
“It was a violation of my First Amendment rights. You have signs up in my own yard,” Hepburn said. “It was a violation of our safety and privacy, I felt.” The sign was returned to its place by Hepburn’s wife when she realized it had been removed.
Alderman Samantha Nugent said the man may have been working with the Department of Water Management and condemned the act of removing the sign.
“This incident surrounding the Black Lives Matter sign being removed is unacceptable in the 39th Ward. I have been working with various city departments throughout the day in an attempt to identify the individual in the video and which department they may work. It is believed the individual is connected with the Department of Water Management (DWM) either as an employee or as a contractor.
The DWM is working to identify the individual and confirm they are an employee of the department. It is the standard procedure of the Department of Water Management to refer issues of this magnitude to the Office of Inspector General for a complete investigation and necessary action,” the statement said.
The Chicago Department of Water Management said it does not tolerate employee misconduct and is working to confirm whether the man was an employee.