PITTSBURGH — The Federal Bureau of Investigation and concerned residents met Monday night to talk about messages of hate popping up in one of Pittsburgh's most popular neighborhoods.
According to the FBI, there have been 10 hate-related incidents in Lawrenceville in the past six months, things like flyers advertising hate groups and incidents of vandalism.
The meeting was packed with people from all over the Pittsburgh area, concerned about the increase in hate speech and incidents.
Several people reported seeing hateful flyers posted on telephone poles.
"I’m really afraid things are going to get worse," said Gladys Gines who has lived in Pittsburgh for the last nine years. "I saw my Puerto Rican flag on the floor and was full of feces and my porch full of feces and feces thrown next to the wall of my house. I was really upset, that flag was from my father. He’s a soldier."
Lawrenceville United co-hosted the meeting with the FBI, where they were briefed on the increase of white supremacy activity in the city.
“That’s an increase in one community that gives us the idea that we need to increase our community outreach in places like Lawrenceville," said Robert Jones, FBI special agent in charge. "That way the public is aware and can recognize those signs and report them to us.”
The FBI also informed the community of the difference between hate crimes and free speech and how every sign of hate needs to be reported. At this point, the FBI doesn't know who spread the flyers in Lawrenceville.
On a national level, the FBI said this is the most white supremacy they have seen since the 1990's.
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