• September 20, 2019
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Queens Chronicle

Hunt for vandals in anti-Semitic scrawl

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Posted: Thursday, September 5, 2019 10:30 am

At least three different law-enforcement agencies are looking for the vandals who painted anti-Semitic and racist slogans on a well-known Rockaways beach club last weekend.

Officials believe someone broke into a shed used to store art supplies on the grounds of the Silver Gull Beach Club, which is located on federal land between Jacob Riis Park and Breezy Point.

The vandals used the paint to scrawl slogans like “Heil Hitler” and “Gas Chamber” on the walls and doors of the beach club’s playground.

A swastika and an anti-black slur also were written on the walls.

The vandalism, discovered last Friday, was painted over by the managers of the private club soon after police had been called.

The U.S. Parks Police said they were investigating the vandalism as a hate crime.

But early this week, both Gov. Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio said they had directed their own investigators to join the case.

“Enough is enough,” Cuomo said in a statement released with the news that he had assigned the state police to aid in the hunt to “ensure the cowards responsible are held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.

“Let me be very clear: We have zero tolerance for hate of any kind in New York.”

De Blasio announced that he was launching a new Office for the Prevention of Hate Crimes ahead of schedule.

In part, he said, the early start was so that the office’s new executive director, Deborah Lauter, a former Anti-Defamation League official, could join the probe.

“These are not just crimes of vandalism, they are clearly crimes of hate plain and simple,” said state Sen. Joe Addabbo Jr. (D-Howard Beach), whose district includes the club.

“As the world’s most diverse borough, we in Queens need to come together and let everyone know that hate has no place in our communities.”

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