ALLENDALE TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Allendale's Township Board has decided not to continue prosecuting individuals who broke local ordinances during protests involving the Civil War statue in a local park.
Charges were issued earlier this year against people who defaced the controversial statue, which depicts a Confederate and Union soldier standing side by side with a slave child at their feet.
READ MORE: Controversial Allendale statue vandalized
Last summer, several dozen community members and activist groups called for the statue’s removal, saying it is racist and offensive.
The Township Board decided that the “primary aspect of the statue controversy was whether or not the statue would remain in its current location,” a decision that was made earlier this year.
In a 5-2 vote this past June, the Allendale Board of Trustees decided to keep the statue in place.
The Board also concluded that the number of trials that would be required to prosecute the violations “will have minimal impact on justice, but will instead create more divisiveness while not adding anything constructive or new to the conversation.”
“Instead of focusing on the negative and divisiveness, Allendale is choosing to move forward and focus on other important issues in the community,” said Adam Elenbaas, Allendale Charter Township supervisor, in a statement.