(EDGE) The mayor of San Luis Obispo, California said the LGBT Pride flag that hung outside her home was burned last Thursday, June 1 - the first day of LGBT Pride Month. Police are investigating the incident as a possible hate crime, The San Luis Obispo Tribune reports.
"When I left my home in the morning, I saw something right in front of my house," Mayor Heidi Harmon told the newspaper last week. "Someone had taken my rainbow flag and burned it."
The rainbow flag wasn't the only thing destroyed in the incident. Harmon said a yard sign with a "super positive" message was cut up.
San Luis Obispo Police Chief Deanna Cantrell said the incident will be reported to the U.S. Department of Justice, which is required by law.
After the incident, police advised Harmon to cancel a press conference last week, where she intended to condemn President Donald Trump's decision to pull the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement. Nevertheless, she told the Tribune she will not "let fear keep me from doing (the work of being mayor)."
She added the vandalism goes against the city's recently approved ordinance "deeming San Luis Obispo as a welcoming and inclusive city."
"This is not that dissimilar to burning a cross on someone's yard," Harmon told the newspaper, adding someone made the effort to "meticulously burn a symbol of civil rights."
She said police have yet to determine if the LGBT Pride flag was burned with intention or a random act of violence.
"There's a level of concern," she said. "That's on my mind as you can imagine, and also the minds of my family members."
She told the Tribune she is disturbed that in 2017 anti-LGBTQ sentiment "is not only still happening but it seems to be ramping up."
Harmon also took to Facebook to discuss the incident. Find her post below.