A Nevada sheriff wasn't pleased with a local library's support for the Black Lives Matter movement. So, he issued a thinly-veiled threat.
"Due to your support of Black Lives Matter and the obvious lack of support or trust with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, please do not feel the need to call 911 for help," Douglas County Sheriff Dan Coverley wrote an open letter this week. "I wish you good luck with disturbances and lewd behavior, since those are just some of the recent calls my office has assisted you with in the past."
He also accused BLM of conducting protests that "have resulted in violence, property damage and the closing of local businesses, sometimes permanently."
"To support this movement is to support violence and to openly ask for it to happen in Douglas County," he wrote.
The letter was in response to a proposed diversity statement previously shared by the County Public Library Board of Trustees. In addition to declaring support for BLM, the draft statement also condemned "all acts of violence, racism and disregard for human rights."
Douglas County Public Library Director Amy Dodson told The Washington Post the diversity statement wasn't intended to be anti-police, but rather a message of inclusivity. She also emphasized that the library supports local law enforcement and does not back a movement that calls for police defunding.
"It simply was meant to state our inclusivity at the library, that we are open and welcoming to everyone and we treat everyone equally," Dodson said. "I want the sheriff’s office to know we do love and support our law enforcement here. We would never want to support a movement to defund the police, so to speak. I think a lot of this has been a big misunderstanding."
After Coverley's letter was published, the county library canceled its Tuesday meeting to discuss the diversity statement. County spokeswoman Melissa Blosser told the Reno Gazette Journal trustees decided to cancel due to "overwhelming amount of community response." Blosser also confirmed the county demanded the library to remove the statement draft from its Facebook page.
"We had them take it down. We cannot use public owned media to propagate a political agenda," Blosser said. "Sheriff Coverley would also like to take this opportunity to clarify that the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office will continue to respond to all 911 calls, including those at the Library."