The Los Angeles home of LeBron James has become the site of an apparent hate crime just one day before the Cleveland Cavaliers superstar embarks on his seventh straight NBA Finals.
The LAPD has confirmed to HuffPost that authorities were called to Jameshome early Wednesday morning after someone vandalized the front gate of the home.
TMZreports that the vandal spray-painted the word n****r.
Police are looking into the incident further as investigators sift through available security footage. Property managers at the home have already covered up the graffiti.
James, whose primary residence is in Akron, Ohio, was reportedly not presentduring the time of the incident. He purchased the house in 2015.
Hate crimes rose 20 percent in the U.S. during 2016 amid heightened tensions related to the presidential election, according to the Center for the Study of Hate & Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino.
Earlier this month, James was recently asked about race relations in the U.S. in light of reports that Boston fans recently hurled racial slurs at Orioles center fielder Adam Jones.
Its a delicate situation. Racism, we know, exists. You try not to put yourself in a position, for me as a father, I try to give my kids the blueprint on how life is gonna be. But at the end of the day, I can only tell them so much, and they have to live it themselves. For me, I just try to be respectful, for one, respectful to others, and I feel like if you do that consistently, then I believe the karma will come back to you.
Game 1 of the NBA Finals between the James Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors starts tomorrow at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California.
Requests for comment from James team were not immediately returned.