An Aberdeen family and an Edgewood businessman, both black, have received offensive correspondence within the last week that is purported to be from the Ku Klux Klan. The Harford County Sheriff's Office is investigating the incidents.
One occurred yesterday, when Kimbal McCoy, 46, owner of Bits & Pieces Thrift Shop in Edgewood, found a business card on the door to his store on Edgewood Road. Mr. McCoy said it read: "You have been paid a social visit by the knights of the KKK. Don't make the next visit a business call." On the back of the card, Mr. McCoy said, was a hand-stamped address: "P.O. Box 60, Rocky Ridge, Md."
Last week, someone apparently tried to pour oil into the gasoline tank of a car belonging to Willie Johnson of Lark Drive in Aberdeen. A locking gasoline cap thwarted the effort.
Along with oil found on the car and ground, a neatly folded letter was left in front of the car, said Mrs. Johnson, 61. The letter, found by her daughter, contained racial slurs and the message: "This is a white town. Go back to Africa."
"The Sheriff's Office has zero tolerance for these kinds of incidents and is aggressively pursuing leads to find whoever did them," said Sgt. Edward Hopkins, an office spokesman.
This is the second time the Johnsons have been the victims of racial hatred.
Mrs. Johnson said the family car was covered with white baby powder about two years ago and racial slurs scrawled over it.
She said there had been no racial problems since then.
"Some of the neighbors have stopped by and have been very supportive," she said.
Deputies visited about 25 homes and stopped cars in the area, hoping to find anyone who might have seen someone near the Johnson car, Sergeant Hopkins said.
Mr. McCoy said he brought his family to Edgewood about 20 years ago.
"My customers are black and white," Mr. McCoy said. "My wife and I raised four children here. We haven't bothered anyone, or been bothered, until now.
"We're just working hard, like everyone else."
A spokesman for the Frederick County Sheriff's Office said there have been Ku Klux Klan meetings in Rocky Ridge near Thurmont.
"They [KKK members] have never caused any problems," the spokesman said. "They have their meetings, but haven't been very active for about two years."