‘Get out of the race now!!’ | Texas mayor receives package containing noose, threatening message, police say

​The message in the package simply read, “Get out of the race now!!” according a post from local police.

ARCOLA, Texas — The mayor of Arcola, Texas received a threatening package on Tuesday that contained a noose and a message demanding he withdraw from his race seeking re-election, police said in a post on Facebook.

Arcola Chief of Police Arika Carr said the package was part of incoming mail that was received before 5 p.m. on Monday. Carr said Tuesday morning is when Mayor Fred A. Burton opened it and he immediately contacted the chief. 

Chief Carr said she was shocked when she learned what was inside of the package. 

“Could not believe, like in 2024 that we’re still dealing with these types of issues and that someone would actually mail a noose to the mayor,” Carr said. “It was very disturbing, very troubling.”

There was a message in the package that read, “Get out of the race now!!,” according to the Facebook post from the Arcola Police Department.

The Arcola Police Department said the package was delivered by the post office but wasn’t postmarked. That along with other inconsistencies led the police department to contact the FBI and the postal inspector’s office for help with investigating this.

The mayor responded to the incident Thursday.

“I will not be intimidated by this symbolism of racism to get me out of the race,” Burton said in a statement to KHOU 11 News. “Whether it was sent by a developer or their supporter, I am not leaving this race. The citizens of Arcola will decide the race.”

If you have any information about the incident, you’re asked to contact Arcola police at 281-431-5205. Police said the case “is being treated with the utmost seriousness.”

Burton is seeking his third term as the city’s leader after he was re-elected in 2020. Election day is May 4. Chief Carr tells KHOU that Mayor Burton will not be dropping out of the mayoral race. 

According to his bio on the city’s website, Burton has lived in Arcola with his family since 2000.

According to the 2020 U.S. Census, the city of Arcola had a population of 2,034. It’s located in Fort Bend County about 26 miles south of Houston, west of Highway 288.

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