The Newport-Mesa Unified School District said that the swastikas that were written on a locker at Corona del Mar High School are being looked into as a hate crime by Newport Beach police.
The school board found out about the damage over the weekend and told the police about it.
“This behavior is unacceptable and will not be tolerated in our schools,” said Annette Franco, a spokesperson for the district. “We are investigating and have met with the Jewish Federation of Orange County to determine next steps in helping our school community to be better citizens. Immediate action is being taken as we develop longer-term plans.”
A police spokesperson for Newport Beach said that officers were looking into it.
More than two weeks have passed since the war between Israel and Gaza began. This is not the first antisemitic event in the school district.
At a house party in 2019, a group of high school students drinking alcohol took a picture of themselves giving the Nazi salute while arranged around a table with red plastic cups in the shape of a swastika. The police were called.
Not Corona del Mar High School, but Newport Harbor, Estancia, and Costa Mesa High Schools sent the kids to that party.
A county study says that the number of hate crimes reported in Orange County has gone up over the past few years, from 41 in 2021 to 103 in 2022.
The founder of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at Cal State San Bernardino, Brian Levin, said that since the war began, there have been more anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim events, though the data is still very new.
Levin said that between October 6 and October 16, seven racist hate crimes were reported in Los Angeles. This is up from three in the same time period last year.
“We have seen increases in anti-Muslim and anti-Jewish hate. More of the increases are occurring with noncriminal incidents, and anti-Jewish incidents for now seem to be going up more,” Levin said
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