Murray Hill, Gramercy & Midtown East

Crime & Mayhem

VIDEO: Pink Swastika Scrawled Onto Synagogue in Midtown, Police Say

October 26, 2017 8:16am | Updated October 26, 2017 11:59am
Police guarded the door of the Sutton Place Synagogue two days after vandals spray-painted a swastika on the door there.
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DNAinfo/Kristen Templeton

MANHATTAN — Three vandals sprayed a pink swastika on front door of a Midtown East synagogue Wednesday morning, NYPD officials said.

The three men, who were recorded on security camera footage, tagged Sutton Place Synagogue at 225 East 51 St., near Second Avenue, about 5 a.m., police said.

Police video released Wednesday night showed the men walking down the sidewalk, two dressed in hooded sweatshirts and one wearing a baseball hat.

One of the men wore sandals with socks, video shows.

Later, one of them can be seen spray painting a large swastika on the door of the building, while another stands by.

The NYPD's Hate Crime Task Force is investigating the incident, police said. There were no arrests as of Thursday morning, police said.

Police were looking for three men that vandalized the Sutton Place Synagogue, they said.
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Rachel Ain, they synagogue's rabbi, reached there Thursday, called the swastika a "symbol of hate."

“It's a disturbing and sad thing to happen, for a symbol of hate to be on our door, which is our sacred home,” AIn said.

“As a community it's our job to speak out against hate crimes and anti-Semitism," she added.

They'd swiftly covered over the swastika with a coat of black paint, according to Ain, who'd earlier taken to Facebook to describe her sadness and alarm.

There have been 290 reported hate crimes across the five boroughs so far this year, 22 percent more than the same time period last year, according to the NYPD.

Of those, 126 were anti-Semitic, up, up 96 percent from last year, statistics show.

The most recent anti-Semetic incident disturbed those who live and work in the Midtown East area, like Rahonda Clark, 45, a nanny, who sat with the child babysits in a small park adjacent to the synagogue Thursday afternoon. 

"Once upon a time you felt safe in churches or in this case a synagogue, but evil is so rampant now it finds you wherever and this act was pure evil," Clark said.

“People who would do such a thing should be pushed tot he full extent and go to jail," she added.

Anyone with information in can call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS.