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Electronic message sign reprogrammed to display racial slur in Western Maryland

Maryland State Police
Posted at 2:58 PM, Mar 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-10 14:58:10-05

HAGERSTOWN, Md. — Someone reprogrammed an electronic road sign in western Maryland to display a racial slur, said Maryland State Police.

MSP is investigating the incident as a hate crime. They say a driver informed police at 12:30 a.m. March 9 that the message sign on Route 40 at Smithfield Lane in Hagerstown was altered to contain a racist message.

Troopers discovered the lock on the sign had been broken and pried open for someone to get access to it. The sign was removed and from the roadside.

State Police said they contacted businesses and residents in the area, but have no suspects so far.

The message board was originally placed at the location about a week ago with the message "Do not text and drive."

State Police are urging anyone with information about the incident to call the Hagerstown MSP barrack at 301-766-3800. The identity of callers may be kept confidential.