Local

Vandals draw swastikas in neighborhood

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Houston police are investigating the appearance of swastika graffiti in one neighborhood. There have been three reports of it in the Kingwood area.

Residents driving by the entrance to Kingwood several days ago were met with a symbol of hate, and it's one that's been popping up around town, making some a bit uneasy.

On Tuesday night, Kingwood residents heading home were met with something more abrasive than the usual tree-lined landscape entrance. It was a black swastika that's several feet high and several feet wide spray-painted on the entrance to Kingwood.

"It's different. It's not something that's typical up here," HPD Officer William Lacy said.

Police are now investigating, and they say it's the third swastika that's emerged in the last three weeks. Another was on the side of a stop sign and one more was etched on the side of a concrete sidewalk.

And while the Kingwood gang tracker has documented white supremacist gang members in the area, police don't believe it's their work.

"In Arian brotherhood and Arian circles, they're not generally known for graffiti. They're known for crime," Lacy said.

Those who work and live nearby don't believe it's a message of hate either, but agree it's strikes a chord with many.

"It means some bad things for a lot of folks, and unfortunately, it probably opens up some old wounds," Kingwood business owner Sal Santa Maria said. "Maybe the kids have no idea how serious that is."

"I do believe it is just ignorant kids being stupid and not paying attention, not understanding the repercussions that they're causing," Kingwood Resident Dan Klaus said.

The one thing that does concern Kingwood residents is where the vandals are getting their ideas.

"Even if it is kids, unfortunately they're getting their ideas from adults because kids wouldn't necessarily know much about the symbol," Kingwood Resident Edda Harrision said.

Investigators have few leads, but want to mention that anyone caught doing graffiti can be arrested on site and slapped with a big fine.

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Tags:
kingwood, local, erik barajas
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