Supporters Rally Around Black-Owned Cafe in Illinois After Possible Hate Crime

Community members in Oak Park, Illinois, rallied in support of a local Black-owned business, L!ve Cafe, on January 7, after a paper-wrapped brick with a racial slur written on it was found outside the business the previous day, police said.

The Oak Park Police said a passerby alerted them to the brick and said a window was damaged at the business. Police reported that the property was not damaged, but said they were investigating the incident as “attempted vandalism to a local business that may be considered a hate crime.”

In their statement on Facebook, the cafe’s owners invited the community to attend a vigil on Thursday, and provided information about the incident.

“I am sorry to report that someone attempted to put a paper-wrapped brick through the window of L!VE Café sometime between yesterday and today,” the L!ve Cafe owners wrote. “The paper wrapping the brick had Black writing that stated, ‘No N****** on the Ballot.’ There was another letter wrapped inside of that note. The police have informed us that that note has to be processed and they can not currently divulge its message,” they added. Credit: Dan Braxton via Storyful