Judge rules Columbus statue in Philadelphia can remain


Shown is the skyline in Philadelphia, Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A judge has ruled that a statue of Christopher Columbus can remain in south Philadelphia, reversing a decision by city officials to have it removed.

The explorer became a focus of protesters after the May 2020 police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota. Common Pleas Court Judge Paula Patrick said last year’s decision to remove the now-boarded-up statue from Marconi Plaza was unsupported by law and based on insufficient evidence.

A city representative expressed disappointment and officials were exploring all options “including a possible appeal.”

Attorney George Bochetto said the plaintiffs were “ecstatic” and vowed to seek removal of a wooden box covering the 144-year-old statue.

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