Police are investigating multiple incidents of anti-Semitic graffiti found on the campus of Nassau Community College (NCC).
Third Precinct Police are investigating five bias incidents that have occurred at Nassau Community College in East Garden City since October. The latest was on Friday, Dec. 9 at 8:06 p.m., when a student notified security that he discovered multiple swastikas along with the words “Germany” and “Heil Hitler,” drawn with a black marker inside the E cluster Buildings first floor men’s bathroom. That incident comes just two days after a security officer discovered three swastikas drawn on the B cluster building stair handrail and on the wall. The swastikas were approximately eight-inches long and drawn in black ink.
Police say three other bias incidents occurred at the college in the month of October. Three swastikas were drawn in green marker inside the E cluster building second floor men’s bathroom on Oct. 15, at 8:44 a.m. On Oct. 28, the NCC cleaning staff discovered two swastikas and an anti-Semitic comment on the wall of the men’s bathroom in the D cluster building at 9:52 p.m. The other incident occurred on Oct. 29 at 12:40 p.m. when security discovered multiple swastikas drawn in blue marker on the walls and urinals of both men’s rooms on the first and second floor of the E building.
“Nassau Community College is an institution which fosters a safe environment for all, and prizes equality and respect for all of its students, faculty, staff and visitors. We have zero tolerance for any and all kinds of hate speech,” said NCC President Dr. W. Hubert Keen in a statement. “The discovery of swastikas on our large open campus is unacceptable and will not be tolerated. While it is unclear whether the graffiti crime was committed by trespassers or not, the institution will take all steps necessary to ensure that the perpetrators are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, and that Nassau Community College remains a safe haven for all students, faculty, staff and visitors.”
Since October, swastikas have also been found drawn in Mineola and Stewart Manor, as well as in the bathroom of a Port Washington high school. Mindy Perlmutter, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council, said the organization is concerned about these recent incidents.
“It is disturbing to see these images. It invokes fear within the community and that is what those people want,” Perlmutter said. “There are a variety of factors that contribute to these crimes from economics, the status of people in the community, people fearful of others gaining power, general uneasiness. When we find this, people often look to scapegoats….[these] hateful messages [and] swastikas painted on buildings produce a tremendous amount of fear in the community.”
Detectives request that anyone with information regarding these crimes to contact the Nassau County Crime Stoppers at 800-244-8477. All callers will remain anonymous.
—With additional reporting by Betsy Abraham