Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office vandalized

By Anjelica Singer and Ed Lewis - [email protected]
Police are seen investigating at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office on Monday morning following damage at the site. Police are seen investigating at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office on Monday morning following damage at the site. -
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Police are seeking this man, captured on surveillance video, in connection with vandalism at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office on Monday. Courtesy Wilkes-Barre Police Police are seeking this man, captured on surveillance video, in connection with vandalism at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office on Monday. - Courtesy Wilkes-Barre Police
Courtesy Wilkes-Barre Police - - Courtesy Wilkes-Barre Police
A biblical quote" Blessed are those who mourn. Matt 5:4" was painted on the wall at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office which can be seen through smashed windows. August 12, 2019 Aimee Dilger|Times LeaderAimee Dilger | Times Leader A biblical quote" Blessed are those who mourn. Matt 5:4" was painted on the wall at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office which can be seen through smashed windows. August 12, 2019 Aimee Dilger|Times Leader - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Planned Parenthood was vandalized overnight doors and windows inside and out were smashed and words were painted on the wall. Aimee Dilger|Times LeaderAimee Dilger | Times Leader Planned Parenthood was vandalized overnight doors and windows inside and out were smashed and words were painted on the wall. Aimee Dilger|Times Leader - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Planned Parenthood was vandalized overnight into Monday, with doors and windows inside and out smashed and words were painted on the wall. Officials said a video camera was torn down but the intruder was captured on video.  Aimee Dilger | Times Leader Planned Parenthood was vandalized overnight into Monday, with doors and windows inside and out smashed and words were painted on the wall. Officials said a video camera was torn down but the intruder was captured on video. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Melissa Reed, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of Keystone, speaks with reporters about damage at the Wilkes-Barre office. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader Melissa Reed, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of Keystone, speaks with reporters about damage at the Wilkes-Barre office. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
A biblical quote" Blessed are those who mourn. Matt 5:4" was painted on the wall at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office which can be seen through smashed windows. Aimee Dilger|Times LeaderAimee Dilger | Times Leader A biblical quote" Blessed are those who mourn. Matt 5:4" was painted on the wall at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office which can be seen through smashed windows. Aimee Dilger|Times Leader - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Planned Parenthood in Wilkes-Barre was vandalized overnight a burnt paper and markers could be seen near the door as state police investigated on Monday morning. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader Planned Parenthood in Wilkes-Barre was vandalized overnight a burnt paper and markers could be seen near the door as state police investigated on Monday morning. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Melissa Reed from Planned Parenthood leaves the area of the Wilkes-Barre office that was vandalized. A man smashed doors and windows left a burnt book and wrote on the wall with paint. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader Melissa Reed from Planned Parenthood leaves the area of the Wilkes-Barre office that was vandalized. A man smashed doors and windows left a burnt book and wrote on the wall with paint. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

WILKES-BARRE — Glass doors were smashed, graffiti was painted on walls and it appeared a fire was attempted at the Planned Parenthood clinic on North Main Street early Monday.

Surveillance cameras recorded a white male wearing a Pittsburgh Steelers cap and holding a can of paint and a crowbar as he stood inside of the smashed doorway.

Police were still looking for the man Monday night.

Melissa Reed, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of Keystone, said she found out about the vandalism when she reached her Allentown office in the morning.

“About 3 a.m. this morning (Monday) a white male, red hair, threw a brick through our windows. He returned later and threw another brick and painted graffiti inside the lobby area.”

City police and a state trooper with the Forensic Services Unit processed the scene and recovered bricks and a burned book.

Shattered glass was scattered throughout the entrance of the lobby and the interior glass doors were smashed. Red paint was poured on the lobby floor, including the wall with a painted Bible verse: “Blessed are those who mourn Matt. 5:4.”

“The perpetrator sprayed in red spray paint a verse from the Bible I believe in an effort to protest reproductive healthcare for women,” Reed said. “This is deeply distressing but our number one concern is that we open up as quickly as possible as we can to meet our patients healthcare needs.”

The facility does not provide surgical abortions, although it does provide emergency contraception, also known as the morning-after pill.

According to its website, the center provides abortion referrals, birth control, HIV testing, LGBTQ services, pregnancy testing and services, testing and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases and general health care for men and women.

Planned Parenthood moved to the 101 N. Main St. building, owned by businessman Thom Greco, in January after the Kirby Health Center Board opted not to renew its lease late last year at Kirby’s nearby Annex One, ending a relationship of more than 80 years.

It was learned Planned Parenthood’s interest in providing “safe, legal abortion services” at its rented 63 N. Franklin St. location reportedly was the reason behind the Kirby Health Center Board’s decision.

At the time of the move, Greco said Planned Parenthood would not be providing surgical abortions in his building.

Greco declined to comment at the scene on Monday.

Reed said this was the first incident of vandalism at the Wilkes-Barre’s Planned Parenthood clinic.

A statement from Planned Parenthood Keystone suggested the Wilkes-Barre clinic was targeted.

“This was an act aimed to intimidate, threaten and instill fear in Planned Parenthood Keystone patients and employees. We are seeing an alarming rise of violent, hateful rhetoric across our country, and we have learned all too painfully, that threats of violence beget acts of violence,” according to the statement.

“There are people who oppose access to abortion care who are very vocal in their opposition. We had 50 men and women scheduled to get reproductive health care here today and we had to reschedule them today. Women in this area rely on us as they have for 85 years,” Reed said.

Anyone with any information about the incident or the suspect is asked to call Wilkes-Barre Police Det. Thomas Harding at 570-208-4224, or call headquarters at 570-208-4200.

A city police Facebook post of the surveillance photo had been shared more than 2,000 times by monday night, as well as being shared as part of news stories posted to the web and social media.

Police are seen investigating at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office on Monday morning following damage at the site.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_7706E254-C1C0-418E-8815-D1749E2E6BEC_ne201981295644277-11.jpegPolice are seen investigating at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office on Monday morning following damage at the site.

https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_03C0467A-0B93-43F0-9045-019EBB9D3FC7_ne201981211226142-7.jpeg

Police are seeking this man, captured on surveillance video, in connection with vandalism at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office on Monday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_wbpd-suspect-planned-parent-vandal-08122019-8.jpgPolice are seeking this man, captured on surveillance video, in connection with vandalism at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office on Monday. Courtesy Wilkes-Barre Police

https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_WBPD-suspect-2-planned-parenthood-08122019-6.jpgCourtesy Wilkes-Barre Police

A biblical quote" Blessed are those who mourn. Matt 5:4" was painted on the wall at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office which can be seen through smashed windows. August 12, 2019 Aimee Dilger|Times Leader
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_TTL081319Planned-Parenthood2-3.jpgA biblical quote" Blessed are those who mourn. Matt 5:4" was painted on the wall at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office which can be seen through smashed windows. August 12, 2019 Aimee Dilger|Times LeaderAimee Dilger | Times Leader

Planned Parenthood was vandalized overnight doors and windows inside and out were smashed and words were painted on the wall. Aimee Dilger|Times Leader
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_TTL081319Planned-Parenthood3-3.jpgPlanned Parenthood was vandalized overnight doors and windows inside and out were smashed and words were painted on the wall. Aimee Dilger|Times LeaderAimee Dilger | Times Leader

Planned Parenthood was vandalized overnight into Monday, with doors and windows inside and out smashed and words were painted on the wall. Officials said a video camera was torn down but the intruder was captured on video.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_TTL081319Planned-Parenthood5-3.jpgPlanned Parenthood was vandalized overnight into Monday, with doors and windows inside and out smashed and words were painted on the wall. Officials said a video camera was torn down but the intruder was captured on video. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

Melissa Reed, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of Keystone, speaks with reporters about damage at the Wilkes-Barre office.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_TTL081319Planned-Parenthood6-3.jpgMelissa Reed, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of Keystone, speaks with reporters about damage at the Wilkes-Barre office. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

A biblical quote" Blessed are those who mourn. Matt 5:4" was painted on the wall at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office which can be seen through smashed windows. Aimee Dilger|Times Leader
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_TTL081319Planned-Parenthood7-3.jpgA biblical quote" Blessed are those who mourn. Matt 5:4" was painted on the wall at the Wilkes-Barre Planned Parenthood office which can be seen through smashed windows. Aimee Dilger|Times LeaderAimee Dilger | Times Leader

Planned Parenthood in Wilkes-Barre was vandalized overnight a burnt paper and markers could be seen near the door as state police investigated on Monday morning.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_TTL081319Planned-Parenthood4-3.jpgPlanned Parenthood in Wilkes-Barre was vandalized overnight a burnt paper and markers could be seen near the door as state police investigated on Monday morning. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

Melissa Reed from Planned Parenthood leaves the area of the Wilkes-Barre office that was vandalized. A man smashed doors and windows left a burnt book and wrote on the wall with paint.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/web1_TTL081319Planned-Parenthood1-3.jpgMelissa Reed from Planned Parenthood leaves the area of the Wilkes-Barre office that was vandalized. A man smashed doors and windows left a burnt book and wrote on the wall with paint. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

By Anjelica Singer and Ed Lewis

[email protected]