New York City police have launched an investigation into a potential hate crime after several posters featuring United States soccer star Megan Rapinoe were vandalized, according to Julia Jacobo and Aaron Katersky of ABC News.
Eight posters featuring Rapinoe - who's gay - were found defaced with homophobic slurs at a Manhattan subway station. The vandalism was first discovered Monday, the day after the United States won the Women's World Cup.
The case was referred to the police by New York's Metropolitan Transport Authority, which released a statement condemning the alleged hate crime.
"Hate has no place in the transit system and we work hard to make the subway a welcoming, safe environment for everyone," a spokesperson for the transport authority said, according to the Guardian. "We referred this to NYPD which responded to investigate, our maintenance teams got the posters cleaned and we will have them replaced with new ones if necessary."
The New York Police Department's Hate Crime Task Force is investigating the incident, according to ESPN.
Rapinoe finished as the top scorer at the Women's World Cup and was named the player of the tournament in France. She celebrated the United States' victory with her teammates during a ticker tape parade in New York City's Canyon of Heroes on Wednesday.
Rapinoe is a vocal advocate for LGBTQ rights. She's also campaigned for women soccer players to receive equal pay as their male counterparts. Rapinoe triggered a response from President Donald Trump during the World Cup when she declared she wouldn't visit the White House if her team won the tournament.