It was reported last week that at least two murals in Ukiah, California had been defaced with Nazi graffiti.
One of the artworks depicted a woman wearing a surgical mask that had been vandalised with a drawing of a swastika and the letters ‘SS’ on her face.
Former President Nancy Horowitz Bertsch and Current President Sherrie Ebyam of Kol HaEmek, the Mendocino County Inland Jewish Community, wrote a letter to the Ukiah Police Department that said: “These acts of defilement are Hate Crimes. As leaders of our Jewish Community, we will not sit quietly and let this go by. We expect that the city of Ukiah Police Department will investigate, find, and hold accountable those responsible for these crimes.”
Shannon Riley, Deputy City Manager for the city of Ukiah, wrote a letter which read: “On behalf of the city of Ukiah, I am appalled and saddened by recent acts of graffiti swastikas and other Nazi-style symbols — on two different public art projects. These incidents were discovered and reported to various individuals, including to the two artists, and the vandalism was removed immediately. The Ukiah Police Department was not notified until Wednesday, 30th June, nearly seven days after the first case was discovered. Since that time, information including photographic evidence of the vandalism has been gathered and the detective division of UPD is investigating the incidents as a hate crime. Every effort is being taken to bring justice to the individual(s) responsible for this defilement of public art.
“The community can assist by reporting any information related to these incidents, as well as in-progress acts of graffiti or vandalism, to the UPD through its non-emergency line (707-463-6262). Additionally, existing graffiti can be reported through the use of the city’s mobile app, iWorQ, available on Apple or Android phones.”