BETHESDA, M.d. (FOX 5 DC) - A Bethesda couple is speaking out after they say they’ve become the latest family in their neighborhood to have a Black Lives Matter sign stolen from their yard.
Mike and Annie Smith told FOX 5 someone took down their Black Lives Matter sign and another sign with a quote from Martin Luther King Jr. and his picture overnight.
The Smiths say it’s happened in surrounding neighborhoods in Bethesda too.
"I felt violated," Annie Smith said. "It doesn’t feel controversial to me. It feels important. It’s something we teach our children. I think everyone should teach their children Black lives do matter."
"This is our property, and we should be comfortable with putting out messages that we think are the right messages and for other families to see." Mike Smith said.
FOX 5 also heard from some residents in the nearby Bannockburn community who say there have been neighbors receiving anonymous letters, one from June and another from last week, about Black Lives Matter signs.
In one letter the anonymous author calls the Black Lives Matter signs "disgusting" and tells the homeowners they "don’t belong" in the neighborhood.
Annie Smith says she wanted to bring attention to the letters, so the rest of the community is on alert.
"It was disgusting," Smith said. "The important part of this letter is it’s unsigned. It was an anonymous letter which I found funny because if you want to start a dialogue, you’re going to sign your name and stand up and say who you are like I would; like I am Annie smith so who are you?"
Mike Smith says between the letters and the signs being stolen, it’s a reminder this country still has a long way to go.
"Those talks we have to have with our kids we have to continue to have those talks," Smith said. "We still have to explain where those signs went, which is again it’s not the way I wanted to spend my Thursday evening today."
The Smiths say thanks to the community support, neighbors brought new signs to replace the ones that were stolen.