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2 Denver schools targeted with vandalism, hateful graffiti

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Posted at 6:47 PM, Oct 18, 2021

DENVER — Police in Denver are investigating two incidents of vandalism and hateful graffiti at two Denver schools.

George Washington High School and Denver Academy of Torah, a private Jewish school, were targeted by a vandal or vandals sometime over the weekend.

The department’s bias-motivated crime team is looking into the reports after a suspect or suspects threw rocks at windows at Denver Academy of Torah, breaking glass and damaging an electrical box, police said.

The team is also investigating a graffiti incident at George Washington High School. A suspect or suspects spray painted antisemitic, racist and homophobic messages around campus, according to school officials.

Police are not sure if the two incidents are related at this time.

In an email to parents Monday, the principal of George Washington High School, Kristin Waters, wrote, “we are doing everything possible to identify who is responsible for this horrific hate crime.”

She said Denver Public Schools were on site Sunday afternoon to make a report. The school was informed of the incident Monday morning and began removing the graffiti before classes resume Tuesday.

Waters said in the email that the school will make available a support team for students who need it.

“To our community, I am so sorry. Hate crimes strike at the core of our identity and belonging,” Waters wrote in the letter. “The diversity and welcoming spirit of our school is what makes this place so special, and to have been targeted for that, is gut wrenching. We have worked hard to build a space and community where each of us feels a sense of belonging, and we cannot let this act of hate change our mission. We value the story and experiences each of you brings to our community, and will continue to act with intention to ensure that each of you has a home in our Patriot family.

Police said the suspect or suspects could face bias-motivated crime charges.