A biracial Arizona couple awoke the morning of Christmas Eve to find a large wooden cross had been constructed on their lawn -- and that someone had tried to set it on fire.
Iggy Griffin of Gilbert, Ariz. told Phoenix Fox affiliate KSAZ-TV he's afraid he and his wife are being targeted because they're a biracial couple. A few feet away from the cross was a rock wrapped in what the station described as a "nasty" note.
"I'm sitting up here, just like it's 2011, almost 2012. I got biracial kids, the whole nine yards," Griffin told KSAZ.
He made the discovery around 5:30 a.m. Saturday. At first he only saw the cross, but when police arrived he saw that it had been partially burned.
"I got maybe about three feet from it and you could smell where it was burned and as it got lighter, we were able to see that they tried to ignite it," he said.
Neighbors recalled seeing a bright light from the Griffins' yard around 1 a.m. but thought it could be Christmas lights.
Police collected evidence and the case will be turned over to detectives who specialize in hate crimes.
According to KSAZ, the note left implied the incident may have been related to Iggy Griffin's business. He's an independent contractor who installs satellite dishes. But either way, he said it's unacceptable.
"It ain't something that you expect in this day and age, in addition to that on Christmas Eve morning," he said. "Dealing with the police and seeing something like that..something that should have been gone...a way long time ago."