Somebody has vandalized basketball icon LeBron James' house in Los Angeles with a racial slur early Wednesday morning. A source told NBC News that the perpetrator spray-painted the n-word on the gate outside James' Brentwood mansion. By the time the cops arrived, shortly after the 6:44 a.m. call they received, a property manager had painted over the vandalism.
LAPD spokeswoman Officer Norma Eisenman told the New York Times that they are investigating the incident as a hate crime. The police don't know who committed the crime or who reported it, and it's not clear if there was anyone at home when it occurred.
This disturbing news comes just one day before the 32-year-old is playing in the NBA finals with the Cleveland Cavaliers, who are facing off against the Golden State Warriors on Thursday. This is James' seventh straight NBA finals.
As the New York Times notes, James has spoken up when it comes to systemic racism and police brutality over the past couple years. In July, he expressed his support for Black Lives Matter and tweeted about the Philando Castile shooting.In September, he spoke out against the wave of killings of unarmed Black men. "My personal feelings is that I got a 12-year-old son, a 9-year-old son, a 2-year-old daughter, and I look at my son being four years removed from being able to drive his own car, being able to leave the house on his own," he said during a Cavs press conference. "It’s a scary thought right now to think, if my son gets pulled over, and you tell your kids, if you just comply, if you just listen to the police that they’ll be respectful and things will work itself out." He continued, "It’s a scary-ass situation ― that if my son calls me and says he’s been pulled over, that I’m not that confident that things are going to go well and my son is going to return home."