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Racial vandalism targets neighborhood

By: Janet Kim Email
By: Janet Kim Email

After a weekend away in Louisville celebrating the 100th birthday of a Holocaust survivor, Jim Scheff says he came home to a painful reminder of the hate that sparked the Holocaust, when he saw a swastika and the word "Jew" written across his trash can.

Scheff's home wasn't the only one hit, several swastikas were sprayed in areas along Haiti Road in Berea, along with other derogatory words on street signs, roads and curbs. Some even targeted African Americans.

"When people put a slur on any group of people, I feel like it's a sad situation," says Teri Williams, a neighbor who saw the vandalism.

Berea Police say the suspects will face criminal mischief charges, with damages estimated at $300, but charges could be bumped up pending further investigation.

"Whether we decide this is a hate crime or not, this is an active investigation," says Captain Ken Clark of the Berea Police Department.

Scheff says he was raised Jewish, but is no longer practicing. While many suspect teens of the vandalism, Scheff says the hurt is the same.

"We're trying to be a part of this community, and while it's not representative of the people here; it's still deeply hurtful," says Scheff.


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