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Several swastikas spray painted in La Jolla neighborhood

Posted at 5:45 PM, Jun 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-26 20:50:58-04

La Jolla, CALIF., (KGTV) -- San Diego Police detectives are investigating a vandalism case, where someone spay painted swastikas and inappropriate words in a La Jolla neighborhood.

Every day, Joe Dicks usually takes La Jolla Mesa Drive to work. But Wednesday morning, he saw something very unusual.

"We were disgusted by what we saw," Dicks said.

He and his wife saw swastikas drawn in white spray paint in several locations along La Jolla Mesa Drive. Some were on the walls of private homes. Others were drawn on the sidewalks, on construction signs, and even the road. Dicks was so shocked, he stopped the car to take photos.

"Look at what the symbol represents," Dicks said. "Hatred, intolerance, violence, I mean, make no mistake. This is a threat."

San Diego Police said they got their first report at 7 am Wednesday. Then came two more reports of Inappropriate graffiti on several properties. City workers were immediately called out to clean them up.

According to the Anti-Defamation League, 2018 was the third straight year of increased Anti-Semitic incidents in California. Dicks said this cannot become the new norm.

"This has no place in this community, and has no place in this city, and has no place in our country," Dicks said.

Especially with the deadly Poway Synagogue shooting still fresh in the minds of San Diegans, Dicks says this needs to be taken seriously.

Police said they are investigating this case as a vandalism report. But it could be upgraded to a hate crime, depending on what detectives conclude.

"If we don't take it seriously every step of the way, it just escalates. If we tolerate it and make excuses for it, and we ignore it, we invite it," Dicks said.

The Anti-Defamation League has announced they will be offering $2,500 for information leading to an arrest. They sent 10News this statement:

We are confident that those responsible for the hateful vandalism will be brought to justice, and we hope that by offering this reward, someone with critical information for investigators will be motivated to speak out.
-Tammy Gillies, ADL San Diego Regional Director