Over the years, downtown Portsmouth, New Hampshire, has evolved into an inclusive, eclectic little city where people of all backgrounds, races, and sexual orientations can gather and express themselves freely and safely, or so we hope. When things like this happen, it feels like we are taking a giant step backward. It's disheartening, upsetting, and scary for the entire community.

Joanna Kelley is the owner of Cup of Joe on Market Street in Portsmouth, and is also the assistant mayor for the city. Jo is a dear friend of the station, and just recently competed in Seacoast Skating with the Stars alongside our very own Logan. She's strong, hardworking, and an all-around good human.

@jooooooooanna via Instagram
@jooooooooanna via Instagram

Jo took to Facebook this morning to share the sad news that between the hours of 7 PM Monday 2/20 and 6 AM Tuesday 2/21, Cup of Joe was vandalized:

Jo states in her post:

"I wish I could say this is the first time an attack on Cup has happened, but it’s not. We know that hate-filled attacks like this happen to people of color and the LGBTQIA+ community everyday, all over the country.

As we prepare to celebrate our fifth year in business, we will not be scared into silence. We will demand justice, we will not fear hate, and we will continue our mission."

We stand with Jo and the entire Cup of Joe family during this time. If you have any information regarding this attack, please contact the Portsmouth Police Department.

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