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Middle school's 'Trans Lives Matter' mural defaced

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Posted at 2:49 PM, Mar 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-30 14:49:35-04

DENVER, Colo. (KMGH)— Remnants of a rainbow are all that's left of a mural outside of a middle school in Denver, Colorado.

"I was a little upset that somebody in the community, you know, the community that we live in, just thinks that it's OK to spread hate, and especially directed at our youth," said Jorge Delgado.

He snapped a photo of the vandalism at Lake Middle School after seeing the message, "KEEP THIS CRAP OUT OF SCHOOL WTF" spray-painted in red over the "Trans Lives Matter" mural.

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"I feel like the only reason that somebody would take that upon themselves to, again, spread hateful messages— they've obviously never interacted with somebody [who is trans]," Delgado said.

A nearby surveillance camera captured a man walking up to the mural and defacing it Saturday morning. A homeowner caught the suspect in the act as he was about to take his dog for a walk. The photos the homeowner took show the man carrying a red spray paint can.

"We kind of exchanged some heated words for about 20 minutes before I realized you just can't even reason or rationalize with this individual," said the homeowner, who did not want to be identified. "It was just senseless regurgitation of talking points that have no merit in them."

According to an Instagram post by City Year Denver, students began painting the mural in mid-February.

"I've talked to the kids, and they've talked about how, you know, [the mural] embodies their school spirit," the homeowner said.

The homeowner reported the incident to the Denver Police Department, Lake Middle School and several LGBTQ groups.

A Denver police spokesperson said the department is aware of the incident, and its Bias-Motivated Crime Unit is investigating.

Both the homeowner and Delgado hope this isn't the last of the students' work.

"Make it bigger," Delgado said. "Heck, they have all this wall over here. Let's go. Let's do some more."

This story was originally reported by Pattrik Perez on thedenverchannel.com.