FITCHBURG, Mass. — Fitchburg Police are saying part of their town's beloved Police Memorial Park was vandalized this week.
They're searching for whomever investigators say intentionally defamed the statue.
Police say some hateful words were etched on the statue that's dedicated to fallen officers. The words were the same ones used as lyrics in a controversial 1980's song by the hip-hop group, NWA.
"Immediately handled it like any other investigation in the city. It was a criminal matter," said Chief Ernest Martineau.
However, Chief Martineau admits, "it's hard not to take this targeted vandalism personally. To say this is hallowed ground for us, that's an understatement. It's a place to honor and reflect on the sacrifice of the thin blue line."
The statue has already been power washed clean. Chief Martineau says he wanted it done fast.
"That message is not who we are in the city... and (we) wanted to get it removed as quickly as possible."
He says the statue was vandalized sometime Tuesday night. Now, he hopes to find the culprit and avoid any repeat offenders.
"This park means a lot to every man/woman who ever wore the uniform for FPD," said Martineau.
It all went down during National Police Memorial Week.
However, the statue - all cleaned up - will be featured during the city's Police Memorial event on Sunday morning.
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Cox Media Group