A photo taken Thursday on Benson Street shows the new message. <i>Editor's note: Objectionable content may be legible if photo is enlarged.</i> - Photo from Whyte family

Medford family again targeted with 'KKK' message

Vandals again have targeted a west Medford family with a message that includes the letters "KKK."

Sol Whyte said that a neighbor banged on the door of the Benson Street home she shares with her husband, Jonathan, and their two daughters at about 10:30 p.m. Thursday and reported that he had just come across a man pouring gasoline in the street.

The man ran away but the pooled gasoline spelled out an obscenity and "KKK" and the suspect appeared to have more he wanted to write before lighting it, Sol Whyte said the neighbor told her.

Whyte said her brothers and sisters who were staying with her ran after the man, but he jumped over a fence and escaped.

Whyte is packing to leave the home she and her family have lived in since January to go stay with relatives in the area.

"If what they want is for me to move, then I will move," she said. "I have to keep my kids safe."

She said since the family was targeted with KKK and a cross burned into their grass Monday, community members had visited to drop off cards and letters of support, flowers and encouragement. The outreach had made her feel better, she said.

But the sickening smell of gas and the new message made up her mind that she would have to leave the neighborhood.

Medford police said they have numerous resources focused on the case and hope to have a break in it soon.

— Anita Burke

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