(NEW YORK) — New York City police are on the lookout for the person or persons who defaced a statue of Hall of Fame baseball great Jackie Robinson outside the Brooklyn stadium where the New York Mets’ single-A minor league team plays.
A MCU Park official discovered the vandalism done to the statue, which also features a likeness of Brooklyn Dodgers shortstop Pee Wee Reese putting his arm around Robinson as a symbol of solidarity.
The messages were written in black marker on the monument and included “Heil Hitler” and several expletives and racist epithets.
Billy Harner, director of communications for the Cyclones, remarked, “It’s an absolute tragedy that someone would deface it the way they did.”
As of Wednesday afternoon, workers were still having a difficult time removing the graffiti and racial slurs from the stone.
Robinson was the first African-American to play in the Major Leagues back in 1947, opening the door for other minorities in the sport.
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Tom LoBianco, Deirdre Walsh and Tal Kopan, CNN
John Clyde, KSL.com
Seth Fiegerman, CNN
Stephen Collinson, CNN