Many residents of Rome have been speaking out regarding a recent incident of racism in their city. One of the questions raised by Jackie Linzy Nelson, NAACP Rome Branch President, was why elected officials have yet to speak publicly about the act. John Mortise, city councilman for the 2nd ward in Rome, did reach out to Big Frog 104 with a statement. Here is the message, in it's entirety.

This is John Mortise 2nd ward councilor City of Rome. I would like to give you a statement regarding a article you posted about on Facebook this morning first street.

I would like to address the despicable and completely unacceptable racial attack that occurred this past weekend on First Street in Rome. Like Mrs. Nelson of the NAACP, I was away celebrating the Labor Day holiday and only learned of the incident when a friend reached out to me. I would like to personally apologize to Joya Stuckman. I am truly sorry that you had to experience something so hurtful and disgraceful. No one deserves to be so maliciously attacked by such pure hatred and evil. I want the residents of the Second Ward and the city to know that I do not stand with racism and I will not tolerate it.

Across the nation there is a movement to end racism, racial profiling and racial injustice and it is so disheartening to see any act of racism occur within in our own community. I have spoken with Rome Police Chief Kevin Beach and am confident the incident is being fully investigated and the person or persons responsible will be held accountable.

Rome is a very diverse city and that is what makes it beautiful. Racism has no place in our community and we all need to speak with a unified voice against it.

I look forward to working with Mrs. Nelson, Chief Beach, the Common Council and Rome residents as we eliminate hatred and evil from our City.

Those are the words of John Mortise, city councilman for the 2nd ward in Rome. Police continue their investigation of the incident and ask anyone with information to contact Detective Zoeckler at 315-339-7712. Here is more info on the incident.

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