The mayor of a small town in South Carolina was quick to cry “hate crime” when her family cars were covered in a mysterious yellow, sticky substance- that the local police quickly identified as pollen.
When Lamar Mayor Darnell Byrd McPherson discovered a bizarre yellow film on her vehicles after returning from an out-of-town meeting, she was quick to place the blame.
“My husband went out to the car to get some things out of the garage,” she said. “He says, ‘Somebody’s painted your car!’”
Thinking it was some kind of industrial spray foam, McPherson notified the authorities.
“I likened it as a hate crime because No. 1, there’s a history in our town of Lamar,” she added.
While racial tensions were high in the 1970s, the history of violent racial acts have not been so well-documented since then.
According to Darrington County Sheriff’s Office Lieutenant Robby Kilgo, the sinister substance was more a naturally-occurring phenomena than malevolent vandalism.
“We found it to be pollen,” Kilgo explained in an interview with Newsweek. “There was no reason for us to collect a sample.”
Fortunately, the lack of need for a sample was a good thing, as McPherson and her husband had washed the cars before law enforcement could even get a sample.
In the report, a DCSO sergeant and deputy “immediately came to the conclusion that the substance had a yellowish tint to it and that it’s a type of powder similar to pollen.”
Despite this, McPherson is still convinced that someone is out to get her.
“It’s something,” she said. “Something that’s sticky that’s stuck to my car and took two different solutions to get it off.”
With the mayor set in her ways about the attack, Kilgo’s agency pushed the matter up to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.
Due the suspicion from her of it being a hate crime, we couldn’t say no,” Kilgo said.
A SLED spokeswoman confirmed that the matter was looked into, but quickly dismissed, as the agency “did not believe a crime occurred.”
Mayor McPherson claims she believes rumors that people are out to assassinate her, and that her town needs to stand up against those trying to harm her.
“What do we need to do in Lamar? I say, we need to come together,” she said. “There should be something else…. But there’s always these remnants of racism.”
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