ELIZABETH CITY, N.C.— Michael Little designed Elizabeth City’s Black Lives Matter street mural, proudly leaving his mark on his hometown.
With the help of several artists like Jimmy Bones, Little painted the mural on East Colonial Avenue in front of the Pasquotank County Sheriff’s Department after winning a city-sponsored design contest.
City Manager Montre Freeman say the mural was unveiled to the public Saturday morning at 9 a.m., and the street was re-opened at 12 p.m.
Freeman says a black Ram pickup truck left skid marks on the mural just before 2:30 p.m. the same day.
Freeman and city council member Darius Horton shared a picture of the suspect vehicle with News 3.
The Elizabeth City Police Department says it is investigating.
“This is a conscientious effort, right - there is no rationalization to why someone made a decision to do that, right, and it’s unfortunate, but I think the people of Elizabeth City are bigger than this bad occurrence,” said Freeman.
Little describes what happened as "petty" but says the actions of the driver doesn’t hurt him at all.
“People were a lot angrier than I was about this. A lot of people thought it was just sad that we can’t put that we matter — Black Lives Matter — on the street without somebody having something to say about it,” said Little.
Damaged, but not destroyed, Little says he’ll restore the mural as many times as need be.
“Why should I give up?” he said.
Meanwhile, Elizabeth City is still working to restore the community Freeman says is still rife with tension three months after the deputy killing of Andrew Brown Jr., which spurred city council members to vote in favor of adding the street art to the city.
Freeman believes the person responsible will be caught and is optimistic about better days to come for the harbor of hospitality.
“I think what this has exposed is a lot of it is a lot of dark spots in the city,” said Freeman. “I still see even more brighter spots.”