Fact Check

Were 9/11 and WWII Memorials Vandalized During Protests?

Social media rumors that two memorials in New York were vandalized proved misleading.

Published Jul 1, 2020

 (Bjoertvedt / Wikimedia Commons)
Image Via Bjoertvedt / Wikimedia Commons
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum and the World War II Memorial, both in New York state, were vandalized during Black Lives Matter protests in the spring of 2020.

During late June 2020, Snopes readers inquired about social media posts circulating that led many to believe that the 9/11 Memorial & Museum and the World War II Memorial, both in New York state, had been vandalized during Black Lives Matter protests sparked by the May 2020 killing of George Floyd, a Black man in Minneapolis who died in custody of a white Minneapolis police officer.

Here is an example of one such post on Facebook, with the user's name cropped out for the sake of privacy:

We reached out to the 9/11 Memorial & Museum to ask if the monument to those killed on Sept. 11, 2001, had been damaged by vandals during the protests. Spokeswoman Olivia Egger confirmed via email that "the 9/11 Memorial was not vandalized during any recent protests."

Readers also sent in screenshots of a Facebook meme from an incident that had nothing to do with protests. The meme includes an image of a woman, whom we have cropped out below for the sake of privacy:

While it's true that an upstate New York woman named Laura M. DiCampli was arrested in September 2019 on suspicion of spraying graffiti on 9/11 and World War II memorials in Geneva, a small city southeast of Rochester, New York, her alleged actions were unrelated to the protests during spring 2020.

We've concluded that the two above posts are hoaxes.

Because the 9/11 Memorial & Museum was not damaged during the spring 2020 protests, and because a vandalism incident in upstate New York that occurred in the fall of 2019 also was unrelated, we rate this claim "False."


Hibbard, Mike. "Tip Leads to Arrest for Sept. 11 Memorial Vandalism."   Finger Lakes Times. 6 September 2019.

New York Times. "After Curfew, Protesters Are Again Met With Strong Police Response in New York City."   New York Times. 4 June 2020.

Bethania Palma is a journalist from the Los Angeles area who started her career as a daily newspaper reporter and has covered everything from crime to government to national politics. She has written for ... read more

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