This morning, the Thurston County Prosecuting Attorney's Office received information from several law enforcement agencies that leaflets had been appearing at residences in various locations within Thurston County. The leaflets were inside bags of apparent cat litter, and contained racist statements against African-Americans and misleading assertions about AIDS and the HIV virus. The distribution of these leaflets is currently a matter being investigated by law enforcement. While mindful of every citizen's right to free expression, such messages of hate are both irresponsible and utterly deplorable.
The previous release of information by this office concerning allegations in the presently pending case of State v. Anthony E. Whitfield was solely for the purpose of alerting persons in the community who may have been exposed to the HIV virus through contact with Mr. Whitfield. The investigation indicates that anyone having had sexual contact with Anthony E. Whitfield since 1992 may have been exposed to the HIV virus. We are also concerned about the potentially large number of persons who may have been secondarily exposed to the HIV virus as a result of this case. I strongly urge any person who has had sexual contact with Anthony E. Whitfield at any previous time to contact the Thurston County Health Department for testing, and to not allow racial bigotry to discourage them from coming forward.
Released by EDWARD G. HOLM
Thurston County Prosecuting Attorney
April 1, 2004