Florida A&M students were outraged at the recent defacement of the university’s marquee at the corner of FAMU and Wahnish ways. It has been a week since unidentified vandals spray-painted the words “War Music” on the marquee.
Students called the vandalism “disrespectful” and “unnecessary.” Two other locations on campus were tagged recently.
FAMU Department of Public Safety received the report of graffiti on the sign at 5:38 p.m. Friday, Feb. 17. By early Sunday, the two words had been cleaned.
After the crime, students vented their frustrations online and in person. Social media networks were brimming with outraged Rattlers. English student Nadine Benjamin was shocked.
“I can’t believe people would actually deface such an important sign on our campus, it’s just really disrespectful,” said Benjamin, a 20-year-old, third-year student.
Defacing any part of the campus is considered a criminal activity and this act can be deemed punishable, according to FAMU PD. Consequences for vandalism include school sanctions as severe as expulsion, as well as criminal prosecution, which can result in jail time.
Plant Operations and Maintenance removed the graffiti from the marquee.
Other vandalized locations were the Frederick S. Humpries Science and Research Building (on the wall facing the new pharmacy building) and pavement near the steps that lead away from the FHSR Building.
Police plan to be more vigilant to stop vandals before they can do any damage. “Officers are always on alert to suspicious activity and heightened security measures are in place to prevent future activity,” said Sergeant Sherri S. Luke.
Another student, Modjinah Coby, argued the pointlessness of vandalism. “As a student I was upset about this crime, whether it’s our students or other students, it’s just really unnecessary to deface school property like that,” said 17-year-old Coby, a first-year, political science student from Ft. Lauderdale.
The FAMU police department is accepting tips from people in the area. Lieutenant Norman Rollins stated that if there is anyone that witnessed the crime and has a lead to further the FAMU Police department’s search for the perpetrators of this crime to please contact the 850-599-3256.