A tip led to the vehicle involved and the identity of the subject driving the truck during the burn out, according to a press release issued by the Lincolnton Police Department. The subject is a 17-year-old male juvenile. He is cooperating with the Lincolnton Police Department, according to the press release and will be charged with misdemeanor damage to real property in juvenile court at a later date.
This mural was intended by the artist, Demarius Pearson to not only unite the African American community, of which he’s a part of, but other minorities that live in Lincolnton. Permission was obtained from members of the Lincolnton City Council by unanimous vote. He worked through several revisions of the artwork before the project was initiated.
Pearson has weathered a great deal of criticism from all fronts on the project, all in a seemingly stoic manner. He’s approached the defacing of the mural with the same fortitude. Instead of attempting to remove the tire marks, he’s leaving them between each letter on the artwork to show it won’t be stepped over.
“I was expecting damage to be done to it but not for it to happen so soon,” Pearson said. “I feel better about it since it was a kid. I don’t think it’ll happen again. I talked to the person who did the mural in Charlotte and they told me about a sealant that you could put on it so it can’t be done again.”
As it turned out, the young man who did the damage will now become a contributor to the final installation.