Local News
6:11 pm
Sun March 24, 2013

Kentucky Fairness Campaign Director Chris Hartman's Car Damaged, Defaced With Swastika

On Saturday night, some 300 people gathered at the Muhammad Ali Center in downtown Louisville for the annual ACLU-KY/Fairness Dinner. Things got ugly after the festivities concluded.

Fairness Campaign Director Chris Hartman left at about 11:30 p.m. and discovered that his car parked near the Ali Center had been sideswiped while parked on the street—the mirror damaged, the side dented and scratched. He called Louisville Metro Police to file an accident report.

Officers noticed more.

A swastika was drawn in black marker on a Fairness bumper sticker. Two Obama campaign stickers were defaced, too—"F--- You" written on one and devil horns and fangs written drawn on Obama's face on the other. A photo provided by Hartman below:

Police are investigating it as a hate crime, Hartman said Sunday in a teleconference call. He plans to contact the Kentucky Human Rights Commission and may also file a hate crime report. 

There's no way of knowing whether the vandalism was targeted at him in his capacity as one of Kentucky's leading activists for LGBTQ issues, Hartman said.

"I think it again puts light upon how these things are still occurring," Hartman said, noting the recent controversy of the so-called "religious freedom" bill that was approved recently in the Kentucky General Assembly but vetoed Friday by Gov. Steve Beshear.

The incident happened in an alley between Sixth and Seventh streets north of Main Street, Hartman said.

There were no other instances of vandalism apparent near Hartman's car, he said.

It appears that the side mirror of the vehicle that struck Hartman's fell off and was on the ground near when police arrived, Hartman said.

Update 12 p.m. Monday: Louisville Metro Police are investigating and do not have suspects, police spokesman Dwight Mitchell said.

Here are a few more photos provided by Hartman: