This afternoon, workers dropped a black tarp from the roof over the windows on Eighth Street displaying the Confederate and Israeli flags.
[Photo via @zmack]
It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the tarp — building management or concerned neighbors. Both the property manager and the NYPD had reportedly asked the tenant to remove the flags.
As of now, one of the Confederate flags is still in view. Not sure if workers plan on adding another tarp. [Updated: See below]
The flags had been on display here at Avenue D for months, according to various published reports. (The amount of time varies from five months to a year, depending on the source.) As The Daily Beast noted, "It was only after a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, last weekend that the whole neighborhood took notice of Confederate flags across from their homes."
Multiple sources in published reports described the tenant, a 43-year-old male, as mentally ill.
Per the Daily News:
The head of an East Village block association says the clamor to evict a local resident for displaying two Confederate flags is completely misguided.
“This is not someone whose intent is to inflame passions or anything like that,” said Michael Schweinsburg, president of the Eight B C D Block Association. “He is a mental health concern. So no, eviction is not something I would welcome or support.”
And The Daily Beast: "The flags, according to several neighbors who know their owner, might be as much a product of mental illness as they are of racism."
Police have been on the scene since a man threw rocks at the windows on Wednesday morning.
Updated 3:15 p.m.
Updated 4:45 p.m.
DNAinfo reports that the top-floor windows "showcased a pair of the German Naval flags emblazoned with the cross for roughly a decade before they were replaced by the Confederate flags." A neighbor also said that the tenant "routinely shouted racial slurs out his window several times a week until about four years ago."
[Reader-submitted screengrab from Google Street View]
There's an unconfirmed reader report that a man was arrested last night for tossing a rock or some projectile through one of the windows...
Updated 2 p.m.
The flags have been removed.
Previously on EV Grieve:
Report: Anger over Confederate flags on 8th Street and Avenue D