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Snow Swastika Pops Up at Syracuse University

A swastika was drawn in the snow near the 505 on Walnut on Thursday afternoon.

The swastika was on the side of the 505 on Walnut, a luxury apartment where many students live, facing Comstock Avenue. A student saw the symbol from his apartment around 4 p.m.

The Syracuse Police Department was called at about 4:30 p.m. SPD arrived about thirty minutes later, took a photo and cleared the swastika from the snow at about 5:20 p.m.

“This incident is extremely upsetting for Jewish students on campus, especially on the heels of the racist incidents earlier this week targeting both Black and Asian students,” said Jillian Juni, director of SU’s Hillel, in a statement to The Daily Orange. “We have contacted police and University contacts to gather more information and are supporting students on campus.”

Juni also went at the site of the swastika when she found out about the image, to see for herself, she said.

This is the fourth known case of bigoted language or imagery found around or on Syracuse University campus in the past eight days. Last week, racial slurs targeting black and Asian people were found on two floors in Day Hall. On Wednesday evening, language targeting Asian people was found in a bathroom in the Physics Building.

“I join everyone in our community in vehemently condemning this vile behavior targeting the Jewish faith,” said Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer Keith Alford, in a campus-wide email about an hour and half after the incident was reported. “We must continue to work together to build trust, to effect change and create a community in which every individual is respected and valued.”

He added SPD is actively investigating the case.

The swastika was found about two blocks from Temple Concord, a local Jewish synagogue, and about two blocks from the Winnick Hillel Center for Jewish Life, located on SU’s campus.

John Sardino, the Department of Public Safety’s associate chief of law enforcement and community policing division, said shortly before 5 p.m. that DPS was aware of the situation.

At a forum hosted by the Center for International Service for Asian students on Thursday night, DPS Chief Bobby Maldonado said since the swastika was found off-campus, it’s under the jurisdiction of the SPD.

“That is in the city of Syracuse jurisdiction,” Maldonado said at the forum.

In an emailed statement, Joseph Commisso of SPD said the investigation is still in its early stages as of 8:30 p.m. Thursday.

“Upon Officers arrival they discovered what appeared to be a swastika etched into the snowy grass in front of a residence,” he said in the email. “Anyone with information is asked to call the Syracuse Police Department.”

Source: http://dailyorange.com/2019/11/swastika-drawn-snow-near-505-walnut/