A Wisconsin family of six is being forced to move after their duplex neighbor put up a Nazi flag in a sign of protest against President Trump and a viral photo brought angry strangers to their door.
The Diaz family's troubles began when a passerby snapped a photo of the two-story Oshkosh duplex on Saturday and posted it on social media. The picture quickly went viral – and drew outrage.
Rosangela Diaz, a mother of four, said she did not even know about the flag until she saw a Facebook post about it. Her neighbor, who has not been identified, has said he flew it to make a “political statement” against President Trump.
According to Diaz — who is Hispanic and whose husband is black — her family has been threatened after the flag first went up. Someone slashed her tires. People have threatened to burn down her house.
“We’ve had people knocking on our door. Two men approached my kids on the street. I can’t get out of here fast enough,” Diaz told Fox News.
Now she plans on moving because she’s afraid of what will happen to her family.
“We are going to look at a few places,” she said. "I don’t care what any of them look like. We have to leave.”
Diaz’s neighbors have said they put up the flag as a statement over the current political climate. But quickly took it down after it began drawing outrage. However the damage had already been done.
Attempts to contact Diaz’s neighbors were unsuccessful. Their phone was apparently taken off the hook.
But to a local news station, the unidentified couple said their intention was to make a political statement.
"[T]he reason we chose to do so was simple in our minds,” the couple said in the statement. “To us, America today feels much like it's heading towards an era likened to the times of Nazi Germany. Our president has spoken out in the past with plans of action that eerily mirror the times of Hitler. We were simply exercising our constitutional right to freedom of speech."
However, the couple seemed to acknowledge its political statement may have gone too far.
"We are very sorry for the extreme misunderstanding of our actions and we would like to let people know that we meant no disrespect," the statement said.
Diaz’s landlord, Schwab Properties, has offered to allow her family to either break its lease with no penalty or move to another Schwab property in another part of town.
“I spoke with her earlier this week. We have offered to let her out of her lease,” Grant Schwab, owner of Schwab Properties, told Fox News. “Our biggest concern is their safety. They don’t deserve any of this.”
Diaz created a GoFundMe page, which as of Friday morning had raised about $1,800 in donations, to relocate her family and to pay for her attorney's fees. She plans on suing the person who posted her address on Facebook.
“I live there with my four young children and my husband who is almost blind,” she wrote in a statement on the page. “During this time, numerous threats were made to burn down the whole house [and] to knock on the door and punch people in the face.”
The FBI and local police are investigation the threats against Diaz’s family. The local FBI field office declined to comment. Officials for the Oshkosh Police Department verified to local news outlets that they had received reports in connection to the case but declined to discuss the specifics.
Diaz told Fox News that recently someone had hung up a new flag in the place of the Nazi banner.
“I went outside today,” she said on Thursday, “and saw that someone had hung a peace flag.”