December 31, 2013 Knoxville, Tennessee — Authorities are investigating who on Monday placed banners bearing a “white supremacist’s statement” on a railroad bridge over Interstate 640.
A caller alerted the Knox County E-911 Center of the banners at 8:56 a.m., according to Knoxville Police Department spokesman Darrell DeBusk.
Initial reports placed the banners on the Pleasant Ridge Road overpass, but officers located the vinyl banners hanging from the Norfolk Southern Railroad bridge, DeBusk said. Knoxville officers and Norfolk Southern Railroad Police removed the banners.
DeBusk said one banner faced eastbound drivers while the second addressed westbound motorists. He said each banner was about 30 inches high and about 12 feet long and had been tied to the overpass.
DeBusk said the banners “contained a white supremacist’s statement.”
A picture shows the banner bearing the message, “‘Diversity’ is a code word for white genocide.”
DeBusk said no one was around when officers arrived at the overpass and no one has claimed responsibility for the banners.
He said the Police Department’s Intelligence Unit and railroad police are investigating the incident. Officers with each agency took one of the banners as part of the probe.
DeBusk said the owner of the banners can contact the Police Department at 865-215-7212 to reclaim the items