PERINTON, N.Y. (WROC) — The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office is investigating after racist and anti-semitic graffiti was discovered on several buildings in Perinton Thursday morning.
“KKK” and a swastika were spray-painted on the rental office for Pines of Perinton. Another swastika was spray-painted on the sign of Rocky’s Automotive Service.
In addition to the swastikas and “KKK” graffiti, other racial slurs were also spray-painted on the buildings, including the n-word. Additional racist graffiti was found on a senior graduation sign nearby. In total, seven buildings were vandalized with the hateful images, officials say.
The ensuing investigation was extensive, as deputies canvassed more than 600 properties Thursday. Additionally, Gov. Cuomo has directed the New York State Police hate crimes task force to investigate hateful graffiti.
“I am disgusted by the swastikas and other racist graffiti that were found in several locations in the town of Perinton Thursday morning,” Gov. Cuomo said in a statement. “This hateful language was written by cowards who only seek to divide and instill fear in our communities, and we have zero tolerance for it in New York. I am directing the State Police Hate Crimes Task Force to investigate this horrific incident and ensure those responsible are held accountable to the fullest extent of the law. New York has been and always will be a beacon of diversity and acceptance, and we will continue to stand united in condemning these vile acts of hate whenever and wherever we see them.”
Responding deputies expressed similar disgust over what transpired in this neighborhood.
“This offends me, it makes me mad to be personally honest with you; all it is is seeking to spread hate,” said Capt. Andrew DeLyser of the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office. “We will do everything that we possibly can to find who did this and file any and all possible charges against this.”
Capt. DeLyser asked for the community’s help with the investigation.
“We need to work together as a community, not only to discourage this time of rhetoric, but also to help us in this investigation to lead us to an arrest,” he said. “Anybody who has something, please reach out to us. This is very, very important to us; we’re dedicating a lot of man power to finding out who did this. If anybody has anything, please — if you have a home security system please check your video, if you have any questions we’ll look at it. Even if you have no information about what happened today, talk with your friends and family and neighbors about how unacceptable this is.”
Monroe County Sheriff’s Office officials said this Thursday in regards to the investigation:
“MCSO is seeking surveillance video from Whitney Rd./Perinton homeowners & neighbors residing in neighborhoods between Watson & Baird Rds. Anyone who has video depicting suspicious individuals or suspicious activity between 07/01/20 at 10 p.m. – 07/02/20 at 6 a.m. is encouraged to call 911.”
Capt. DeLyser said whoever was responsible for the graffiti is not a true member of the community.
“This isn’t us and whoever did this is not a true member of our community, because a true member of our community wouldn’t do something like this,” he said. “This isn’t a spray-painted curse word on the side of the road, this is something that represented hatred, death and the greatest national tragedy in United States history, is what these words represent.
“I don’t know which could be worse, ignorance of what those words mean, or knowing what they mean and putting them up there,” Capt. Delyser said.
The Pines of Perinton is home to many families from Afghanistan and Iraq who served shoulder to shoulder with U.S. military, and were brought to the U.S. with the help of the U.S. State Dept. & the non-profit “Keeping Our Promise Rochester.”
Congressman Joe Morelle (D-25) condemned the graffiti on Twitter Thursday.
Fairport Mayor Julie Domaratz commented about the graffiti on Twitter Thursday morning:
Check back with News 8 WROC as we will continue to update this developing story.