SAN FRANCISCO—The San Francisco Police have released surveillance video of a man burning a mural celebrating the LGBT community in San Francisco’s mission district.
The incident occurred late at night on June 29. Police responded to a reported building fire on 24th Street and Bryant Street. When they arrived on the scene, they found the mural, which is owned by nearby Galeria De La Raza, on fire.
The mural, titled “Por Vida” which translates to “For Life,” has been vandalized repeatedly since its initial unveiling on June 13. The mural is the work of Manuel Paul of the Los Angeles-based Maricón Collective. It depicts three images; on the left, two men are together, in the middle is a transgender individual and on the right two woman are together. The mural was displayed as part of San Francisco Pride Month and celebrates LGBT culture.
Three days after the unveiling of the mural, it was vandalized with graffiti, Five days after that, on June 21, it was again vandalized with graffiti. June 29 was the first time the mural was burned and it has not been defaced again since.
SFPD releases video of person setting fire to an LGBT mural at a Mission District Gallery. pic.twitter.com/NXdJ7IDONU
— Sergio Quintana (@svqjournalist) July 19, 2015
The video of the incident depicts a man, approximately 6 feet tall, wearing black pants, a black hoodie and white shoes and gloves, as the arson suspect. The man is has some sort of black cloth covering the lower half of his face. He has a bottle full of an unknown flammable liquid which he uses to cover the left portion of the mural. He then lights the liquid which engulfs the entire left image in flames and burns some of the middle image as well.
This is not the first mural belonging to Galeria De La Raza to be vandalized. Another mural was also repeatedly vandalized in 2012 at the same location.
Anyone with information on the incident or of suspect’s identity is can call the SFPD at (415) 553-1133 or the anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444.