SARASOTA -- Someone spray-painted "#MeToo" this week on a bayfront statue depicting a sailor and dental assistant kissing at the end of World War II.
According to the Sarasota Police Department, officers responded shorting before 1 a.m. Tuesday to a report of a person vandalizing the "Unconditional Surrender" statue at North Gulfstream Avenue and Bayfront Drive. Officers found "#MeToo" painted in red on the left leg of the woman.
Officers searched the area for spray paint bottles, but found none. No other objects were found to be vandalized.
There was no surveillance video of the incident. Damage is estimated to be more than $1,000. Police believe the vandalism took place Monday between the afternoon and evening. The City of Sarasota Public Works department has been notified and the graffiti had been removed by 9 a.m.
Anyone with information is asked to call the police department at 941-954-7025 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers by calling 941-366-TIPS or online at www.sarasotacrimestoppers.com.
George Mendonsa, the sailor who kissed Greta Zimmer Friedman, a dental assistant in a nurse's uniform, on Aug. 14, 1945, died Sunday at age 95. Some view the kiss as a celebration, but others consider the act a sexual assault by today's standards.
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