As the nation waits for the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on whether Roe v. Wade will continue to determine the legal landscape on abortion, some on the left are already lashing out at the presumed outcome. In addition to the news that a man with a gun was arrested at U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s home on Wednesday, those in North Carolina are responding to news closer to home.
On Tuesday June 7 at a little after 7 a.m., Asheville Police were called to Mountain Area Pregnancy Services to investigate widespread damage to the pro-life center’s property, according to WLOS.
At the site, there were broken windows and other damage to the building as well as threatening messages in red spray paint, like “If abortions aren’t safe, neither are you!”
“We and the police are viewing this as a direct threat,” Kristi Brown, the clinic’s director said in a June 8 interview with Carolina Journal.
She said that they’ve had three or four detectives visit the site for extended periods to gather evidence, and they are taking it very seriously. One of the vandals may have injured themselves, as there was blood near the broken glass. Police say they have obtained blood samples from the scene and are testing them.
In addition to the blood being analyzed, Brown said there are video cameras on site and the footage, as well as fingerprints, are being reviewed. She said that when she mentioned one potential lead to the police, they said they were already aware of the information and were following up on it.
In terms of the damage, she said it was fairly extensive.
“Our restoration company is working on a total assessment, but we don’t have that number yet,” Brown said. “A door has to be replaced; two larger windows have to be replaced; the paint that’s on the exterior of the buildings, the paint on the walls, the only way to get that off at this point is to repaint. So basically the entire building will have to be repainted even though paint is only on three of four walls.”
Brown also said furniture in the lobby that paint got on will also have to be discarded, and they already pressure washed the sidewalk that the threat was written on. She said the inside of the building was largely spared.
“The outpouring of love from this local community has been unbelievable,” she said. “We couldn’t answer the phone calls quickly enough yesterday. I could not respond to all the texts quickly enough yesterday, Facebook messages, emails. We have people bringing lunches, breakfasts, just to love on our team.”
Brown also said people are sending checks already to help pay for the repairs.
“That has definitely encouraged and lifted us, but obviously our team is shaken to have a direct threat and the building damaged. We take that personally. We are shaken, yes, but we are not deterred. We are still seeing all of our clients; we are just giving them a heads-up that the building doesn’t physically look good.”
Brown said the services they provide include medical-grade pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, and counseling on the options available to pregnant women in crisis. She said the reason they were likely targeted is that they are life-affirming and don’t refer for abortions.
With the Roe v. Wade precedent likely to be overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court in the coming days, Brown said she is expecting more acts of violence from those favoring abortion access.
“I have spoken with pregnancy-center directors across the U.S. in the past 24 hours, and every center is on pins and needles,” Brown said. “We’re all just trying to be smart and band together and be a united front in this cause, but we’re not going to be intimidated by evil like this. We’re going to continue to provide services that are so needed.”
Andy Ngo, a well-known journalist who tracks Antifa behavior, claims the red paint and slogans fit an Antifa-connected group known as Jane’s Revenge.
According to WLOS, those with anonymous tips can use the TIP2APD smartphone application by searching “Asheville PD” in the app store. Those with information can also text TIP2APD to 847411 or can directly call the Asheville Police Department at (828) 252-1110.