Lime Scooters Will Now Shut Down If Driven Over Pride Flag Crosswalk In Spokane, WA

The Publica Team

Lime, a popular electric scooter and bike rental service, has announced it will be implementing a “no-go zone” around a crosswalk painted with a large Pride flag mural in Spokane, Washington. The crosswalk has become the center of much discussion after the arrest of multiple teens for making skid marks on the painted pavement.

On June 6, the Spokane Police Department announced the arrest of three teenagers on charges of 1st Degree Malicious Mischief, all in relation to the alleged vandalism of a Pride flag-painted crosswalk at the intersection of Howard Street and Spokane Falls Boulevard.

According to the press release, “911 received a complaint advising multiple subjects on scooters were causing damage to the newly painted Pride mural.”

The release continued: “Officers observed widespread damage as black scuff marks consistent with scooter wheels were observed across the entirety of the mural. The area is clearly marked to keep traffic away as it was just re-painted to repair previous damage.”

Attached to the release were two photos demonstrating the extent of the damage, both of which showed faint black marks on the street painting consistent with thin tire marks.

Photo credit: Spokane Police Department

The alleged vandalism, which was claimed by many to be motivated by homophobia, resulted in an outpouring of condemnation from Spokane’s LGBT community and those purporting to be LGBT allies.

One journalist from a local media station, Adam Schwager, went viral after complaining that he had witnessed other teenagers running over the pride mural crosswalk while he was doing on-site reporting.

“A group of five to six kids just started doing donuts and creating skid marks on the Pride Mural. Right in front of me as we’re reporting on three people getting arrested for doing the same thing last night,” Schwager said, accompanying his post with a video of minors riding on what appeared to be rented Lime scooters.

But the arrest, along with the seemingly minimal damage caused to the crosswalk mural, has also prompted widespread mockery on social media.

Many users on X (formerly Twitter) posted in support of the teens arrested, while others questioned why a mural had been painted at a busy intersection if it was never intended to be scuffed by tire marks.

While discussion surrounding the incident continues to rage on, the scooter rental company at the center of the alleged “acts of vandalism” has now issued a statement.

“All of us at Lime condemn these vile acts in no uncertain terms,” Lime Director of Government Relations Hayden Harvey told The National Desk. “At a time when our teams at Lime are beginning pride celebrations around the globe, it is disturbing to see the hate taking place in Spokane.”

Lime has now implemented a “no-go zone” over the crosswalk, meaning scooters driven over the mural will be remotely shut down. According to the company’s website, entering a “no-go zone” will cause a Lime vehicle to “gradually come to a stop,” forcing a rider to walk their scooter until it is outside the zone.

The incident in Spokane is not the first time an individual has been arrested or investigated for “defacing” a pride mural painted on the street.

In February, a 19-year-old from Clearwater, Florida, was arrested after being caught on video doing “burnouts” with his truck on a pride crosswalk in Delray Beach. Dylan Brewer turned himself into the Delray Beach Police Department after the video began to circulate online. He was charged with felony criminal mischief over $1000 and reckless driving.

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