WASHINGTON — A noose was found hanging from a tree outside the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden on Friday, according to U.S. Park Police.
Police responded to reports of “suspicious activity” near the Hirshhorn Museum at around 6 p.m., after a Smithsonian police officer discovered the noose on the west side of the plaza while conducting security checks.
It is unknown when the noose was hung or how long it had been there.
A noose has historically been used as a symbol of racism. Two young men were charged with hate crimes in connection to an incident at Crofton Middle School, where a noose hung earlier this month.
Bananas were hung from nooses at several locations on the American University campus, which has been characterized as a racially motivated crime.
Last week, Richard Collins III, a 23-year-old ROTC cadet was fatally stabbed at University of Maryland’s campus. Prince George’s County police and the FBI are investigating his death as a possible hate crime. A white University of Maryland student has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with his death. Collins, who was black, died days before he was expected to graduate from Bowie State.
His funeral was held Friday.
Park Police have asked anyone with information about the Hirshhorn incident to call 202-610-7500 or submit a tip by calling 202-610-8737.
Like WTOP on Facebook and follow @WTOP on Twitter to engage in conversation about this article and others.
© 2017 WTOP. All Rights Reserved.