Los Angeles, United States | AFP |
A man who admitted to defacing Donald Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in protest at the Republican presidential candidate’s treatment of women was arrested on Thursday, police said.
James Otis had planned to hold a news conference in the early morning at the site of Trump’s star and then surrender to police, but he was arrested beforehand.
Otis, who had his misdeed filmed on Wednesday, said he initially wanted to remove the star and auction it in New York on Election Day.
The proceeds, he said, would go to nearly a dozen women who have accused the 70-year-old Trump of sexual misconduct.
Otis ended up taking a sledgehammer and pickaxe to the star but could not totally remove the slab, as the “stone was like marble,” he told the news agency.
The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce quickly moved to repair the star, which was awarded to the billionaire businessman in 2007 for his work on his reality television show “The Apprentice.”
“When people are unhappy with one of our honorees, we would hope that they would project their anger in more positive ways than to vandalize a California state landmark,” chamber head Leron Gubler said.
“Our democracy is based on respect for the law. People can make a difference by voting and not destroying public property.”
Gubler said the chamber planned to pursue the case against Otis, who was charged with one felony count of vandalism.
Nearly a dozen women have accused Trump of groping, forcibly kissing or being sexually aggressive toward them in the past.
He has denied the allegations and vowed to sue the women after the November 8 election.
This is not the first time Trump’s Walk of Fame star has been targeted.
In July, a Los Angeles street artist built a tiny wall of wooden planks topped with barbed wire around it, in protest at Trump’s campaign vow to build a wall on the Mexican border.
Last year, excrement was left on the star and someone drew a large yellow X over it.
A swastika was also drawn on the red tile earlier this year.