Just weeks away from Election Day on Nov. 3, a banner asking voters to support the proposed combined elementary school at the polls was vandalized.
The vandalism was discovered Friday morning as the sign, which stands by the sidewalk at the Grant Circle rotary, was torn in multiple locations — making everything but "Question #3" illegible.
"We're a little sad this morning," the Vote Yes for Gloucester Kids Facebook page read Friday morning. "It makes us sad to think about the person who would do such a thing — take a knife or a screwdriver in the middle of the night and tear apart a sign with 'Gloucester Kids' right in the middle. What type of person opposes a new school so violently that they would do such a thing? Sad."
GloucesterAssistant Police Chief Joseph Fitzgerald confirmed that police have opened up a case in response to the vandalism.
The vandalism at Grant Circle garnered a multitude of responses early Friday morning as a number of city officials and residents in favor of the combined school circulated a photo of the vandalism and expressed their concern.
The leading voices of those in opposition to the combined elementary school noted on Friday that they do not know who the culprit might be.
"I have no idea," Denise Goulart Pascucci told a reporter when asked if she might know who vandalized the sign. "We are not out to destroy any oppositions signs."
Pascucci added that a "Vote No" sign was destroyed as well and another had been taken down all together.
"Very sad people have to resort to such childish acts," she added.
Patti Amaral, who has been an advocate for green space and saving Mattos Field where the new school would be sited, explained that "for too many years that I can count I have volunteered to make our city the best it can be. From picking up trash to planting gardens, my heart has always been to make it better not worse. So no, I do not vandalize anything."
"I know from working with the wonderful volunteers working to save our open space called Mattos Field that no one from our group would do that either," she added.
Taylor Ann Bradford can be reached at 978-675-2705 or firstname.lastname@example.org.