Message from Mayor Ward regarding an incident at City Hall

This is an important message I share with our community today.

There now have been multiple acts of vandalism at City Hall Plaza. Last night, someone broke the window to my office on the ground floor of City Hall and—as in the first incident—this person left behind a note. The note was lengthy and hate-driven. I will not disclose the specific contents as it is an active investigation and we are limited in the information that can be released.


Let me be clear, the situation is serious and of highest concern. I want to emphasize that the safety of all City workers at every City of Gainesville building and facility is of paramount importance, as is the security and well-being of our community. Every neighbor and visitor to Gainesville deserves to feel safe and protected in City buildings and on City grounds. To that end, law enforcement is doing everything possible to find the person responsible and bring them to justice.

For my part, I want that person to know that my fellow commissioners and I will continue to do what the people elected us to do. A broken window and ugly note will not shake our resolve. We will stay on course and do the work. We are a City that values inclusivity, diversity and equal opportunity.  As I said previously, as elected leaders, we denounce all forms of discrimination, harassment and racial violence. We believe – I believe – that all people have the right to live and work without fear and intimidation and we will protect that right.


I join City Manager Cynthia W. Curry in encouraging employees, neighbors and visitors to City Hall Plaza and other City properties to remain vigilant and stay aware of your surroundings. If you see anything that does not seem right, please reach out to the Gainesville Police Department non-emergency line at 352-955-1818. If the situation is an emergency, dial 9-1-1.


You have my full commitment, on behalf of the City, that we will take every step necessary to protect and support every member of our community.


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