Durango Police are investigating who may have placed a racist and vulgar note that included political and personal attacks on the windshield of a car parked at the Durango Community Recreation Center last week.
“Whoever this suspect was made it personal,” said Cmdr. Ray Shupe. “They weren’t just attacking an ideology. They were making personal attacks.”
Last Friday, Michael Berry and his wife went to work out at the rec center around 1 p.m. When they returned to their car at 2 p.m., a vulgar note was left on the windshield, written on the back of a flier for Veterans Day events.
Berry, a regular at the rec center at 2700 Main Ave., said the note was filled with political and personal attacks, likely sparked by the anti-President Donald Trump apparel he and his wife wear to the gym.
Berry said he and his wife have a few shirts that express their dislike for Trump. Some wording on the shirts include “Resist,” “This is not normal,” and “No Es Mi Presidente.”
Most of what the note contains is not suitable for print.
“It gives me and others here pleasure to see you two old snowflakes with your (expletive) up t shirts still protesting almost a year later … must be miserable for you both!! Great. Go Trump ... done more good in 10 months than the (racial slur) Muslim did in 8 long years.”
The note then goes on to personal attacks:
“You should spend your money not on t shirts but getting all that bad plastic surgery redone on that ‘Joker Looking’ faced wife including her fake (expletive) ... And you ... get some regular classes so you don’t look like a bigger liberal (expletive).”
Berry, who has lived in Durango three years, said he initially felt angry reading the note. But then shock set in.
“That’s really what’s out there,” he said. “That is the extreme right of the Trump supporters who would say anything like that, especially the racism involved.”
Berry alerted rec center staff, then called Durango Police.
Durango Police are set to acquire tape from a video surveillance camera that’s set up outside the rec renter, which may have captured who left the note on Berry’s car.
Shupe said if a suspect were caught, it’s likely he or she would be charged with disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor.
“Anytime you’re exchanging words with someone in a manner to provoke a violent response, that’s disorderly conduct,” he said. “The other thing, it was a personal attack. A political debate is one thing. But when you start making it personal, it’s something different.”
District Attorney Christian Champagne said a disorderly conduct charge is usually a Petty Offense 1 in most circumstances, carrying a penalty of up to six months in jail, with possible fines attached.
However, a disorderly conduct charge can be a misdemeanor 2 or 3, which could hold a maximum jail sentence of a year in jail or five years of probation.