KIRKWOOD, Mo. (KMOV.com) -- About 100 students marched in a peaceful protest Wednesday. The students said their goal is to take a public stand against racism. The protest comes one week after the district said 'racist and derogatory' graffiti was found at three Kirkwood schools.
“The people of Kirkwood are sick and tired of the racism here and the environment that is unwelcoming to its Black residents," said Peyton Nico, a sophomore at Kirkwood High who helped plan the protest.
The students marched from Kirkwood High to the Kirkwood Police Department.
“We are telling the people who did it directly and anyone who defends them that we as a community and a student body do not accept this and we will not allow this to go unheard and we are speaking out that this was horrible act and we are not going to forget about it," said Liv Timp, who is also a sophomore and helped organize Wednesday's protest.
A cellphone video circulating around shows what students told us was the graffiti found at Kirkwood High.
“On the side of the school it was N word as well as N word slave and then the N word again," said Nico.
Kirkwood Schools says racist graffiti was also found on Nipher Middle and North Kirkwood Middle School the same night.
Three teens were arrested and charged Wednesday. 18-year-old Christian Reese and Daniel Moore were arrested and charged with property damage. A juvenile was also arrested in connection with the graffiti.
Kirkwood Schools said two are former students and one is a current student, but won't specify which one.
“It’s sad, you know it’s just like… one of them was African American and we’re just confused why someone would do that, especially with the correlation of capitol raids and what not," said Wyatt Byers, a Kirkwood High sophomore who also helped plan the protest.
A petition started by a Kirkwood High School student aims to paint a racial equality mural on the wall that was tagged with graffiti. As of Wednesday night, the petition has almost 1,200 signatures.
Kirkwood Schools said it considers the graffiti hate speech and the current student will face consequences.