Dowdell to wait to submit resolution on cemeteries

Katie Stallcup
Staff writer

Published: April 28, 2009

Auburn Councilman Arthur L. Dowdell said Tuesday he would wait to submit a resolution to the Auburn City Council asking that all city cemeteries abide by uniform regulations.

Dowdell said the resolution would address the issue of flags placed on graves and how long they could stay.

He touched off a storm of controversy last week when he removed a handful of Confederate battle flags that had been placed on soldiers’ graves at Pine Hill Cemetery in observance of Confederate Memorial Day.

He said the flags were offensive and represented racism to him and others.

Dowdell said he would not address the cemetery issue at the next council meeting but would “let the dust settle.” He said he would present the resolution soon, certainly before Memorial Day.

Meanwhile, Auburn Assistant Police Chief Tommy Dawson said Tuesday no criminal complaints regarding the removal of the flags or alleged threats against Dowdell had been filed.

Dawson said for the police to make an arrest in a misdemeanor – with a few exceptions – an officer has to observe the incident or a report must be filed by someone who was involved or saw it happen.

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