Police investigating anti-Semitic graffiti

Community college officials find remarks after Jewish Festival

June 15, 2000|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

County police are investigating a hate crime in which someone spray-painted anti-Semitic graffiti on buildings at Howard Community College after the Jewish Festival on Sunday.

The words "Jew Die" and "Bring on the holocaust" were painted on the side of Smith Theater and the physical education building. College officials discovered the graffiti Tuesday, but police believe the incident occurred between 10 p.m. Monday and noon Tuesday.

"It's a very distinctive style of writing," said police spokesman Sgt. John Superson. The graffiti included a tag or signature, which police hope will help them find the culprit.

"Someone out there knows," he said. "It's definitely somebody in the area."

The Jewish Festival, sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Howard County, drew thousands of area residents to the college Sunday. The event, which has been held for five years, celebrates Jewish culture with music, crafts, art and food.

Superson said police believe the words on the wall were written in response to the festival.

Rufus F. Clanzy, administrator of the county Office of Human Rights, said the incident appears to be isolated. "This is the only one like this I can recall," he said.

Police said 16 hate incidents were reported in the county from January to May, and 61 incidents were reported last year. Incidents include racial slurs, destruction of property, distribution of literature and assaults.

Anyone with information on the matter is asked to call the county police at 410-313-3200, 410-313- 3700 or 410-313-4780.

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