Lindenwood racist vandals may never be apprehended

Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like TimesLedger on Facebook.

“We have done canvasses and...

By Daniel Massey

Nearly two weeks after residents of an apartment complex in Lindenwood awoke to find spraypainted swastikas and other anti-Semitic graffiti covering their property, police were doubtful the perpetrators would ever be caught.

“We have done canvasses and interviewed witnesses, but nobody really saw anything,” said Sgt. Michael Fanning of the Police Department’s Hate Crimes Task Force, which is investigating the case. “Without any real witnesses, it’s slim.”

On July 11, residents of 84-12 155th Ave. woke up and discovered their building, sidewalks and garages had been defaced with anti-Semitic rhetoric.

“I was walking my dog and I walked to the corner driveway. I looked at the wall of the garage and there was a gigantic swastika,” said Philip Sash, who has lived in Lindenwood near Howard Beach for 27 years. “On my garage they wrote ‘Jew’ and right underneath they wrote ‘bagel.’”

Sash said the vandals appeared to have focused on garages of Jewish residents, indicating they were familiar with their targets.

Witnesses told police they saw five white male teens spraypainting the garage doors at 1:27 a.m. The teens fled on foot in an unknown direction, police said.

Witnesses called the area’s private security company, Men in Blue, at 1:30 a.m., but police from the 106th Precinct were not called in until the outfit’s supervisor arrived on the scene at 7 a.m., Fanning said.

Debbie Velez, captain of Men in Blue, did not return calls seeking comment.

Councilman Joseph Addabbo (D-Howard Beach) said the delay in reporting the crime to the 106th Precinct may have ruined the chances of finding the perpetrators in the area.

“It’s important to report a crime as soon as you see it,” he said. “When a private patrol sees it, they have to report it to the local precinct immediately.”

Fanning expressed hope witnesses might still come forward and help police solve the crime.

“The possibility of someone coming forward in the future is moderate,” he said. “If we can get someone who can identify one of the kids, if the precinct picks someone up who knows about it, it enhances our chances. Other than that it’s not very likely.”

Residents of Lindenwood expressed outrage at the incident.

“This was a bunch of stupid kids,” said a woman who has lived in the area for two years, but who would not give her name. “This is what happens when parents don’t teach their kids to study history. The more people are educated the less likely things like this are to happen.”

In a separate incident, police said they were investigating a possible bias assault against a black man July 10 at the McDonald’s on 159-40 Cross Bay Blvd. in Howard Beach, also in the confines of the 106th Precinct.

Reach reporter Daniel Massey by e-mail at or call 229-0300, Ext. 156.

Posted 7:08 pm, October 10, 2011
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like TimesLedger on Facebook.

Reader feedback

Enter your comment below

By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:

You agree that you, and not or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

CNG: Community Newspaper Group