A man and a woman who were charged on Wednesday with three misdemeanor counts, including a hate crime, for their alleged actions on Saturday, July 4, when Nicole Anderson, 42, covered up a city-approved Black Lives Matter mural with black paint.
David Nelson, 53, directly aided in the alleged criminal conduct, according to the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office.
A video of the incident shows the pair arguing with activists and saying that “all lives matter” and that police killings are a consequence of people who resist arrest.
“On July 1, a local Martinez resident applied for a permit to paint a Black Lives Matter temporary mural in downtown Martinez in front of the Wakefield Taylor Courthouse. The permit was approved by the City of Martinez and the painting was done on July 4,” Contra Costa County District Attorney Diana Becton said in a statement.
“Nelson and Anderson arrived at the scene of the mural after it was completed with paint supplies. Anderson started to paint over the yellow letters ‘B’ and ‘L’ in the word “Black.” She used black paint and a large paint roller to do so. The video has been shared widely by witnesses and shared on social media,” said Becton.
“We must address the root and byproduct of systemic racism in our country. The Black Lives Matter movement is an important civil rights cause that deserves all of our attention,” Becton added. “The mural completed last weekend was a peaceful and powerful way to communicate the importance of Black lives in Contra Costa County and the country. We must continue to elevate discussions and actually listen to one another in an effort to heal our community and country.”