Graffiti found in Minneapolis calls for extreme violence against police, seemingly as a result of the most recent protests in Uptown.
Overly aggressive messages like “Take K-K-Kop’s guns,” “Death to U.S. Marshalls,” and “Kill your local sheriff!” are the latest memos seen in Uptown graffiti.
The protests surrounding the creation of this graffiti stem from the fatal shooting of Winston Smith on June 3, after Smith reportedly fired his weapon at law enforcement. The riots and looting that have followed the shooting have led to extensive property damage and three deaths.
In addition to property damage, cases of graffiti, specifically those with anti-police messages, have been on the rise throughout Minneapolis since last summer, following the death of George Floyd.
A report from the city of Minneapolis shows that accounts of graffiti were up 16% in 2020, and then up another 55% in 2021.
“Tagged” names and symbols account for over two-thirds of all markings Minneapolis reported for 2020, meaning the majority of the graffiti was the product of experienced artists.
April of this year saw 1,359 instances of graffiti, showing some of the highest numbers for a single month in the past decade.
Some artist groups like Memorialize the Movement have taken a particular interest in the graffiti of Minneapolis, specifically art on plywood boards used as riot protection for businesses in 2020. The group has worked to “preserve the protest art” from last summer.
The most recent protests have led to yet another tug-of-war between the city of Minneapolis and protesters who are attempting to take over the Uptown Minneapolis intersection at the site of Smith’s death.
The city has been unsuccessful in its several attempts to reopen “George Floyd Square,” the area located at East 38th Street and Chicago Avenue South where Floyd died.