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On Tuesday (Jan. 30), hearth crews in Wichita, Kansas, responded to a name of a trash hearth at Garvey Park within the southern a part of town. Upon arriving, they discovered items of bronze within the rubble of the hearth, which they decided had been the stays of a prized bronze statue of Jackie Robinson stolen from outdoors of McAdams Park the week earlier than, reduce off on the ankles. A police spokesperson, Andrew Ford, mentioned that the injury made the statue “not salvageable.”
The statue was constructed and put in in 2021 with $50,000 in proceeds from the Degree 42 Basis in honor of the person who broke Main League Baseball’s coloration barrier in 1947 with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Jackie Robinson performed with the Kansas Metropolis Monarchs of the Negro Leagues earlier than becoming a member of the Dodgers. McAdams Park is dwelling to a youth league with 600 contributors in addition to academic applications.
Surveillance video of the theft caught two people making off with the statue. Police have mentioned that they’ve performed over 100 interviews in regards to the crime. “Sure, it’s actually disheartening to see the remnants of the statue and the disgraceful manner wherein it has been disrespected,” Wichita Police Chief Joe Sullivan mentioned to reporters. “There might be arrests, however we’re going to ensure that after we do, we can have a strong case,” he mentioned, including that for anybody concerned within the theft “it is just a matter of time.”
“If it seems it was racially motivated, then clearly that may be a deeper societal difficulty and it actually would make this a way more regarding theft,” mentioned Degree 42 Government Director Bob Lutz. He mentioned in an interview with ESPN that there might be a brand new statue that may appear like the outdated one, which was executed by artist John Parsons. Lutz mentioned the mildew from the late artist remains to be viable and it might be executed and re-erected in months.
Metropolis officers are in accord with Lutz and the muse, with Wichita Metropolis Councilman Brandon Johnson stating he’ll make sure the statue’s return. “We are going to proceed to speculate on this group, and this tragic incident won’t take away that hope that all of us have for the world,” he mentioned to the press. Donations are being collected by an internet fundraiser, with $11,000 raised and an finish purpose of $100,000