Appeal for information following vandalism on Homotopia artwork
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Merseyside Police is appealing for information following vandalism to two artworks in Liverpool City Centre in the past week.
We became aware that the two illustrations which were installed as part of Homotopia Festival's 'Queer The City' outdoor exhibition have been ripped down.
The first incident took place on School Lane over the weekend of 29 October, followed by further damage to another piece on Wood Street on Tuesday, 2 November.
Both incidents are now being investigated for criminal damage and we are treating it as a hate crime.
Inspector for community policing in Liverpool City Centre, Charlotte Irlam said: “We became aware of two artworks being vandalised in Liverpool City Centre and can confirm both incidents are being investigated for criminal damage, and we are treating it as a hate crime.
“We are checking CCTV footage and will be inspecting the other artwork around the city which has been installed as part of the outdoor exhibition.
“We are also engaging with the LGBTQ+ community to reassure them that we are taking this incident seriously and we will take action against those responsible.
“Liverpool has a reputation for being a welcoming, friendly city and there is no place here for hate crime.
“I would urge any victim of hate crime in Merseyside to please come forward. We will support anyone who believes they have been subjected to abuse or left in fear because of who they are, and I want to reassure the public that we will take action against those responsible.
“We have officers and staff dedicated to protecting victims of hate crime who will make sure you will be supported at every step as sensitively as possible.”
If you have any information about these incidents, please contact the Merseyside Police social media desk via Twitter @MerPolCC or Facebook Merseyside Police Contact Centre. You can also call 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously on 0800 555 111, or their online form at https://crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information/forms/give-information-anonymously
If, for any reason, you do not wish to report a hate crime to the police, the independent charity Stop Hate UK to run a 24/7 confidential helpline for all victims of hate crime on 0800 138 1625 or www.stophateuk.org. You can also download the Stop Hate UK reporting app on Google Play or the Apple App Store.
Across Merseyside, we also have a number of third party reporting centres including fire stations, citizens advice bureaus and hospitals. A list of locations can be viewed here: merseyside-third-party-hate-crime-reporting-centres.pdf
Dedicated support for victims of hate crime is also available through the Victim Care Merseyside service delivered by Citizens Advice. They can be contacted at lgbthat[email protected] or by calling 0151 522 1400 ext. 5006.