'We will not be known as communities who tolerate hate,' says Spokane mayor - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

'We will not be known as communities who tolerate hate,' says Spokane mayor

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Spokane Mayor Mary Verner speaks at the press conference, Spokane Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick (right) spoke immediately after Spokane Mayor Mary Verner speaks at the press conference, Spokane Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick (right) spoke immediately after
One the racist flyers thrown into a North Idaho front lawn One the racist flyers thrown into a North Idaho front lawn

SPOKANE, Wash. - At a press conference Friday morning regarding hate pamphlets being dropped in Kootenai and Spokane counties, Spokane Mayor Mary Verner was one of many officials to denounce the racist literature and promise the Inland Northwest will not be known for racism.

The press conference follows the distribution of racist literature in several Inland Northwest communities in which racist flyers and pamphlets are thrown into people's driveways and lawns.
Earlier this month, three men were ticketed for littering after racist fliers were found in yards in Coeur d'Alene, however complaints about the flyers have been coming into police for several months.

On Monday, several Spokane Valley residents awoke to find racist literature in their driveways or on their lawns. Someone drove through neighborhoods overnight tossing the literature from a moving vehicle.

The conference, held at the old Interstate 90 bridge on the Washington-Idaho border, involved the Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations, the Spokane and Kootenai County Sheriff's departments and mayors and police chiefs of several Inland Northwest cities.

The words of all officials who spoke carried the same message.

"We will not be known as communities that tolerate hate, that allow hatred to dwell," said Spokane Mayor Mary Verner. "We will be known as communities who stand up against what is wrong."

Spokane Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick took the podium immediately after Mayor Verner and was exceptionally stern in her message that authorities will use all the power and authority to stop the distribution of the racist flyers.

While no specific actions to stop the distribution of the racist flyers was outlined by any of the officials, the fact that the flyers would not be tolerated was certainly emphasized.

The right to free speech was mentioned briefly during the press conference, but was not a focal point of discussion.

Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich, Coeur d'Alene Police Chief Wayne Longo, Spokane Valley Mayor Richard Munson and officers from other Inland Northwest police agencies were among the others to speak.

 

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