A swastika was found on the side of a Passaic Avenue resident’s detached garage on Dec. 16 around 10:30 p.m. in an incident which is currently being investigated as an act of graffiti and criminal mischief by Summit Police.
Sgt. Peter Frank said the swastika measured about 1 ½ feet by 1 ½ feet, and was drawn in thin black lines on the rear of the detached garage, facing the resident’s property, meaning the person who drew the swastika was on the resident’s actual property. He said the couple living there has young children and the family is part Jewish, part Christian.
“It’s not like it was done just on the street on the garage front door. It was actually on the rear of the garage on the actual property,” Frank said. “At this point, we’re investigating it as an incident of graffiti. However, if other evidence turns up that this was done as a hate crime, we’ll pursue that fully. But at this time, we have no leads.”
Frank said without further evidence, there is no way to classify this as a hate crime.
“We’re not sure if it was done by someone who knows them, we’re not sure if it was done as an act of graffiti — someone being stupid, a kid — or if it was something done as what we consider a bias crime,” Frank explained.
Frank said one of the residents noticed the graffiti when walking past the garage on Dec. 16. However, the exact day and time that this incident occurred is unknown at this time.
Any residents with information about this incident may contact Sgt. Frank or Detective Christopher Madina at (908) 273-0051.