LAURINBURG — A beloved statue on the campus of St. Andrews University was vandalized, according to Laurinburg police.
The statue, near Flora McDonald Gardens in front of DeTamble Library, was covered in toilet paper and spray painted.
The words “Smoke Bandits” and expletives were painted in large black letters around the statue’s pedestal, according to a police report.
The incident occurred Thursday, the night of the Laurinburg-Scotland County Chamber of Commerce candidate’s forum held at the school. The statue was vandalized between the end of the forum and 12:30 a.m. Friday when police received the call, according to Patrol Capt. Chris Young.
The incident was called in George Medlock, a former candidate for Laurinburg City Council.
“My father-in-law lives near there and my son Jack went for a run saw it and called me and told me about it,” Medlock said. “I called the police and campus police and by the time I got there they had already arrived. I kind of wondered if the words they spray painted on it wasn’t some basketball or football rivalry. Fortunately the way it was spray painted it didn’t look like it hit the plaque.”
SAU officials dispute the report of vandalism. They say the statue was only covered in toilet paper.
“There was no damage, so it was not really vandalized at all,” a school official said.
However, Medlock shared photos of the damage with The Exchange.
By Monday afternoon, the statute’s pedestal had been repainted.
The statue is called the Scotsman and depicts a Scottish clansman wearing a kilt and carrying a sword.
The Scotsman was dedicated in 2003 and was commissioned and donated to the school by Irwin Belk a founding trustee of St. Andrews, former state senator and United Nations delegate.
The statue honors both the school’s and county’s Scottish heritage.
Reach Beth Lawrence 910-506-3169