YPD, YFD investigating racist letter, truck fire

Youngstown, Ohio racially motivated fire

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – One Youngstown family is on high alert Tuesday evening. In the last three weeks they found a threatening letter on a building they own, then Monday, someone torched their car. Inside of the old Buckeye School on Mount Vernon Avenue in Youngstown, Nicole Rhodes is in the process of moving and reopening her hair school. “I’ve had this building for 3 and a half years,” Rhodes said. But, she says within the last few weeks things have started to get out of control. She says two and a half weeks ago, someone left a threatening letter taped to the door of the building. “I’m now getting letters on my door saying, ‘Black “B,” we don’t want you here. Don’t get burnt up in there,'” Rhodes said. Youngstown Police are investigating the letter as menacing. In the narrative of an accompanying police report, police state Rhodes was in fear of her safety because of the message on the door. She says the letter creates hate, something she doesn’t want any part of. “I don’t want to encourage at all, no type of hate. That’s what this is,” Rhodes said. She says she’s upset, but it’s not enough to stop her moving forward with reopening the beauty school. “So frustrating and that type of frustration is what makes most people stop doing it,” Rhodes said. Then Monday morning, her 2006 F-150 caught on fire. Youngstown Fire Department Investigator Alvin Ware said somebody set the fire. “Burning my truck up and threatening my family, that’s not cool,” Rhodes said. Ware said the truck was towed to impound lot since it is a suspicious fire. “There’s something going on, yes. And we’re looking at that also,” Ware said. As of Tuesday, there are no leads on who set the fire or who left the note on the building.

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