An act of hate was committed in front of a coffeehouse on Greenwood Ave in Bethel over the weekend.

Police are investigating and the business owner's heartfelt message in a just-posted open letter to the community in the wake of this vandalism needs to be repeated and shared. So, here's my attempt.

Molten Java is located at 213 Greenwood Ave in Bethel, and just a few moments ago, Molten Java's owner posted the below open letter to the community/social media post, giving their account of an incident that occurred over this past weekend, on Saturday night (April 3).

According to Molten Java's owner, late Saturday night, someone cut down Molten Java's pride flag, which was hanging on the railings of the front porch of the building, burned it and placed the remnants of the burned flag at the front door of the store. A store employee discovered the burnt remnants on Sunday morning and contacted Bethel Police who are currently investigating. I found a photo posted to Google of the front of the store that shows the banners that they are referring to in the open letter:

Jacqueline Whiting via Google
Jacqueline Whiting via Google

The statement goes on to say that the pride flag had flown for almost a year to the day next to the other banners with the caption "Kindness, Community, Strength...We'll get through this together". Molten Java's owner states:

"I love this town (Bethel). I hesitated thinking that this incident would make anyone question the overwhelming support, kindness, and sense of community we have. It's a town full of amazing individuals and I feel very lucky to live and work here. So, no, this incident doesn't represent where we live, but it's important to know that it happens here...even here.

If your inclination is to say "It was probably just some kids", "It was just a prank", or anything else that might diminish what happened, that's your prerogative, but I know most of you won't do that, and I know some of you know exactly how this feels.

So, I wanted to let you all know what occurred and that it's being taken very seriously. I'm grateful that I heard the news while I was with my family who taught me that kindness, gratitude and seeing the good around us are so much more fulfilling than the alternatives. They kept me grounded with their support and gave me time to think through what I wanted to say. Now I feel like myself and all of the baristas can do what we love to do and hope the authorities find the indivuduals involved. If anyone has any information please contact the Bethel Police"

Please contact the Bethel Police Department at 203-744-7900 if you have any information.

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