North Springfield resident J. V. Bennett was surprised to find the rolled-up paper on his driveway earlier this month. surprised. He also noticed that his neighbors across the street were upset. The neighbors, who are Hispanic, were disturbed by the fliers, which were covered with anti-immigrant language.
"They were obviously very disturbed about it," Bennett said. "They appear to be an anti-immigrant organization. It's clearly racist."
A neighbor down the street, Betty Yoast found the fliers in her yard as well.
"I looked at it and threw it in the trash," she said. "Sounds like Ku Klux Klan. I was more shocked than anything."
According to the Fairfax County Police, racially biased fliers were distributed on several Fairfax County neighborhood streets. On Saturday, Oct. 11, several people discovered the anti-immigrant fliers on cars and in mailboxes on Ivor Street and Forsythia Street in the Springfield area, and Wigmore Lane in the Alexandria area. The Fairfax County Police Department recognizes the potential harm that bias crimes and incidents can have in a community and consequently encourages people to report them. All bias crimes and incidents are investigated thoroughly.
Near Springfield Mall, Chris Champagne compared the fliers to neo-Nazi efforts. He was surprised they struck his neighborhood off Franconia Road.
"It was rolled up with a rubber band," he said, noting that he had never heard of the National Alliance, an organization that was named on the fliers.
The National Alliance has offices in Herndon; Baltimore, Md.; and West Virginia. Fairfax County Police officer Courtney Young said that although distributing fliers is not against the law, it is a bias incident, and the police publicized the distribution of such material as a public awareness measure. The only thing citizens can do is file a civil suit for trespassing if the fliers are put on private property.
"There's no criminal activity that was done," Young said. "We want to let people know that this group is going around putting out pamphlets."