Woman charged for burning down UBC pride flag

Update Wednesday, April 27, 10:44 p.m.: Fink's first appearance in court Tuesday was adjourned so that she may consult with legal counsel — her next court date is set for May 17.

After speaking to some local media outlets outside of the Richmond Courthouse just before her appearance, Fink has shed light on some of her reasoning behind burning the UBC pride flag.

"LGBT politics have ruined my life," Fink said, as quoted by the Daily Xtra. She described the LGBT label as imposing sexual politics onto the identities of transgender individuals.

As The CBC reported, "Fink, 31, is transsexual and calls the rainbow pride flag an 'offensive' and non-inclusive symbol." They also quoted her as saying, "As a media artist, I intended in burning the flag only to illustrate my displeasure at the university's failure to come to an agreement on the fact of the flag's offensiveness."

Fink further explained using her Voat profile equine_therapy, writing, "I burnt the Gay Power flag, which had usurped the rightful place of ... the University's Arms proper (the University's flag of inclusion of EVERYBODY)."

"Fink said she was suspended by the university when she was identified as a suspect," wrote the CBC, "and is awaiting a non-academic misconduct hearing to see whether she will be expelled."

A screenshot of the Fink's court appearance schedule from the BC Ministry of Justice Website.
A screenshot of the Fink's court appearance schedule from the BC Ministry of Justice Website. Via justice.gov.bc.ca / The Ubyssey

The individual allegedly responsible for burning the UBC pride flag has been charged by the Richmond Crown Counsel for mischief causing damage of property with a value of under five thousand dollars.

The accused – Brooklyn Marie Fink – has been charged with burning the rainbow flag that was flying for OUTweek, put on by the Pride Collective at UBC, on February 6. Using multiple witness reports, campus RCMP identified the suspect and by February 11 the university had announced that Fink had been identified – though not by name. Multiple anonymous sources stated that Fink is a UBC student, but neither the university nor Fink herself has confirmed this.

Fink was charged under section 430(4) of the Canadian Criminal Code, which stipulates that this charge would be against “every one who commits mischief in relation to property, other than property [exceeding a value of over five thousand dollars].”

A screenshot of Fink's charges on the BC Ministry of Justice website.
A screenshot of Fink's charges on the BC Ministry of Justice website. Via justice.gov.bc.ca / The Ubyssey

“I will not confirm that I am the burner of the flag, or any matter under investigation or before the courts,” said Fink in an email to The Ubyssey. “Whoever that person is, who bravely stood up against those LGBT bullies, has legitimate reason to fear for his or her safety.”

When asked for further comment, Fink sent a link to a Voat.co profile that features multiple posts by username “equine_therapy,” but would not confirm that the user was herself.

Fink’s charge was sworn on Monday, April 18 – meaning that she has yet to be convicted of anything. She will make her first appearance in Richmond Provincial Court on April 26.

This article will be updated as more information becomes available. Fink declined interview at this time.