Suspected Vandal Splatters Green Paint on the Lincoln Memorial

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
July 26 2013 9:16 AM

Suspected Vandal Splatters Green Paint on the Lincoln Memorial

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The statue of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the US, is seen inside the Lincoln Memorial September 20, 2012 in Washington, D.C.

File photo by Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images

The Lincoln Memorial was temporarily closed Friday morning after one or more suspected vandals splashed the statue of Honest Abe and the marble floor around it with green paint, according to the U.S. Park Police, which says the landmark will remain closed until the National Park Service can finish cleaning up the mess.

Authorities believe the vandalism happened at around 1:30 a.m., and say it was then discovered later this morning by an officer on patrol, according to the Washington Post. Police are currently reviewing surveillance footage for clues, but so far it remains unclear whether the perpetrator or perpetrators were caught in the act.

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The paint, at least the portions that have been captured by NBC Washington's video cameras and an AP photographer, doesn't appear to resemble anything close to graffiti in the traditional sense. It also appears to be a relatively small amount of paint given the size of the iconic marble statue. Still, the whole thing is drawing a decent amount of news coverage given the landmark's place in history, and the fact it's a slow summer Friday. Here's an NBC screenshot to give you rough idea of the temporary damage.

Lincoln

(The AP photo, meanwhile, shows paint a little higher on both Lincoln's leg and coat.)

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Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City.