Fla. complex housing Jewish students vandalized with swastikas


(JTA) — An apartment complex in Orlando that houses several Jewish students from the nearby University of Central Florida was vandalized with swastikas.

Nearly one dozen swastikas were carved into the walls of the hallway where the Jewish students live at the University House Apartments, located several blocks from the UCF campus, according to local news reports.

The complex, which earlier this month had a mezuzah ripped from an apartment doorpost, is not affiliated with the university. However, the university released a statement condemning the act.

“The anti-Semitic vandalism that took place at an off campus apartment building is reprehensible,” the statement said.

The swastikas were discovered on Saturday. Some students told local media they believe the attack was planned to coincide with Holocaust Remembrance Day.

“It’s not like it was a little doodle by a kid. It was like someone keyed it onto the wall, circled it knowing there are Jewish students living here and on campus,” student Melissa Sherman told WFTV. “We don’t think the timing was an accident because it was Holocaust Remembrance Day Sunday night and she discovered it on Saturday.”

The complex immediately painted over the swastikas and released a statement to residents reiterating its concern over the incidents and offering a $500 reward for information leading to an arrest of anyone involved in the vandalism. In addition to roving patrols and security cameras being added to the property, the statement said “additional measures are being taken.”

In the mezuzah incident, the scroll inside was stolen.



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