At around 8pm on Thursday 16 July, police were called to the Glasshouse pub on Liverpool’s Mill Lane after the letters ‘WLM’, which stand for “white lives matter”, were sprayed on the pub’s walls and next to its front door.
The “white lives matter” slogan has been used to undermine the calls for racial equality made by the Black Lives Matter movement, which has seen countless protests take place, acts of solidarity shown, and high-profile figures voice their support around the world.
“Graffiti of this nature causes stress and inconvenience to businesses and residents, and we strongly condemn any messages, which have the potential to incite hatred in our communities,” chief inspector Col Rooney said.
“We’re keen to hear from anyone who saw anyone carrying out this criminal damage, or anyone who has seen, heard or recorded disturbances or anti-social behaviour near to this premises in recent days.
“Our enquiries are ongoing and we’ll act on any information received to find those responsible.”
APPEAL | We're investigating after graffiti was found at the Glasshouse pub in #OldSwan. "We strongly condemn any messages which have the potential to incite hatred in our communities." Any info, contact @MerPolCC, 101 or @CrimestoppersUK on 0800 555 111https://t.co/Rbn7b7rNeBpic.twitter.com/mf3R1xmBWn— Merpol North Liverpool (@MerpolNthLpool) July 18, 2020
The operator, who did not wish to be named, told the Liverpool Echo a group of young men were seen approaching the pub on CCTV but that footage was inconclusive.
“It was so embarrassing on Friday to see drivers slowing down and taking photographs," they said.
"It's been a difficult summer for everyone but since we have come out of the lockdown there is a lot of frustration.
“I happen to be black with more than 30 years’ experience in the pub trade. I am one of the few black businessmen in the Old Swan area.
"Recently I have had to turn away a few local lads because they were not old enough. I think this graffiti was a response by them to what happened.
"They are not my licensing laws and I was not picking on anyone. I appreciate they are fed up but this type of thing is not the way forward.
Discussing the content of the message sprayed on the pub’s walls, the publican added: “WLM is just a three-letter slogan but what it stands for is dangerous.
"Look I don't really care about the walls - they will get cleaned up. But what I do care about is the mindset behind this kind of thing. It needs to get nipped in the bud."
Anyone with information is asked to contact Merseyside Police via @MerPolCC, 101, or call Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111. Alternatively anyone with any information can use Merseyside Police's online form on https://crimestoppers-uk.org providing reference number 1062 of July 17.