Vandals who knifed an inflatable black Santa Claus in an Oregon front yard are in for a surprise — neighbors plan to buy and inflate their own black Santas in solidarity with the family, reported KOIN.
“It’s exactly the opposite result I think they were looking for,” said Fritz Richard, who plans to replace his own slashed Santa. “There will be hopefully a lot of black Santas around this neighborhood.”
Richard discovered the inflatable decoration had been slashed open and deflated Thursday morning at his Bethany, Oregon, home, where he’s resided for 20 years, reported KOIN.
It had only been up for a few hours after being purchased on Amazon, reported KATU. The family already has several indoor black Santa decorations.
“Looks like someone had a problem with our black Santa,” Richard wrote on Facebook with a photo of the deflated decoration. “I found him this morning, someone took a knife to him.”
Washington County Sheriff’s Department detectives are investigating the vandalism case but are hampered by the lack of security camera video, reported KGW.
Fritz and Belinda Richard, who are African American, have no doubt their Santa was targeted, reported The Oregonian.
“There are white Santas all over our neighborhood,” Belinda Richard said, according to the publication. “They aren’t getting slashed.”
But after the family posted about the vandalism on Facebook and NextDoor, several neighbors came forward to say they will purchase and install their own black Santas, reported KATU.
“The nice thing about the response from the next-door neighbors is that we don’t know any of these guys,” Fritz Richard said, according to The Oregonian.