A drone dropped flyers featuring swastikas and anti-media sentiments outside an Ariana Grande concert last Friday. According to The State Hornet, the Sacramento State University student newspaper, flyers were dropped during the university’s annual “Bites on the Bridge” festival, which takes place on the Guy West Bridge, as well as near Golden 1 Center, where people were waiting to enter to see Grande.
Some of the flyers featured the name “Tracy Mapes © 2018” in the top left corner; The American River Current reported that in 2017, Mapes, a 57-year-old white man, was arrested for “allegedly dropping anti-media leaflets from a drone over Levi’s Stadium and Oakland-Alameda Stadium during two different NFL games.” Certain flyers also featured social media links for “The Red ‘X’ Society.” On Facebook, “The Red ‘X’ Society” is listed as a “Non-Associative Organization” where “the Only Membership Requirement is in the Participation or Direct Action in Exposing US Corruption.” Tracy Michael Mapes is also listed as a founder.
The State Hornet reported that the Twitter user @TracyMapes tweeted out what seem to be photos taken by a drone early Friday morning as well as a video seemingly taken from a drone on April 23. Two days later, @TracyMapes also tweeted out some of the flyers that were dropped during the university event:
Shortly after the incident, Sacramento State president Robert S. Nelsen issued a statement, saying, “Sacramento State condemns in the strongest terms the dissemination of hate speech and propaganda Friday evening at our annual fundraising dinner on the Guy West Bridge. The anonymous act of spreading such vile material is offensive and runs counter to the principles of inclusion and diversity practiced at Sac State. It did not stop the event, nor will it slow our march toward greater understanding and commitment to the rights and safety of our campus community.”
BuzzFeed News reports that the Sacramento Police Department is aware of the flyers and that officers were investigating. The Federal Aviation Administration also told BuzzFeed that it’s working with local law enforcement to investigate the incident.