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Anti-Semitic flyers found in College Area neighborhood prompt concern

Anti-Semitic flyers appear in College Area neighborhood
Posted at 5:11 PM, May 06, 2024

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Over the weekend, residents of a College Area neighborhood found anti-Semitic materials distributed on their driveways and lawns, sparking concern and unease in the community.

Betty, a longtime resident who wished to remain anonymous, said she received an unexpected delivery—of hate.

“That was alarming,” said Betty.

She and her next-door neighbors found baggies at the end of their driveways late Sunday morning.

"That was the first time, I really didn’t feel safe in this neighborhood,” she said. Betty has lived in the area for 14 years.

The packets, weighted with materials like dirt or ground corn, had printed messages on their labels.

On one side of the printout was the header "California AB 3024," referring to a proposed state bill seeking to make "hate littering" unlawful.

Below the header were statements railing against the bill, followed by some images, including the Star of David and a rat, a nod to Nazi ideology.

“They equate them to vermin ... and it really concerned me,” said Betty.

The other side of the printout had statements about the alleged influence of Jewish members of the media.

San Diego State junior Abby Paradise, who lives in the neighborhood, also saw the packets while walking to class.

“You just don't want to wake up and see that. Everything is high tension that’s going on in the world, and it’s disheartening,” said Paradise.

Betty reported the incident to police, and said they confirmed collecting over 10 similar packets in the neighborhood.

On Monday morning, more than dozen other packets were seen in nearby driveways and lawns.

The incident comes nearly a year after a wave of anti-Semitic flyers in neighborhoods, including San Carlos, Poway and La Jolla, prompting local Assemblymember Chris Ward to introduce the "Stop Hate Littering" bill. The proposed legislation aims to criminalize the distribution of hate-filled materials, with offenders subject to jail time and civil penalties.

Betty said the most recent hateful litter has made her neighbors uneasy, including several Jewish neighbors.

“It's wariness and concern. You don't have the peace of mind you like to have ,” Betty said.

ABC 10News reached out to San Diego Police to see where and how many reports they have received and are waiting to hear back.

Meanwhile, AB 3024 has passed the full State Assembly, and is currently in a committee in the State Senate.

A spokesperson for Assemblymember Ward released the following statement:

”The vile, anti-Semitic flyers that were distributed over the weekend near SDSU is exactly why I authored this legislation. These are not just pieces of paper with words. These are targeted attacks intended to harass and intimidate our neighbors, and dehumanize them based on their religion. These flyers have no place in our communities."