Suffolk County police are asking for the public’s help in finding the vandals that spray painted “Trump Lies” with a swastika replacing the M in five locations since last month, authorities said.
The messages were found on the County Road 19-Long Island Expressway overpass in Holtsville on Jan. 1, the Hawkins Avenue-LIE overpass in Ronkonkoma the next day, on a wall on Horseblock Road in Yaphank on Jan. 18, on a cement barrier on the Horseblock Road-Long Island Rail Road overpass in Medford on Feb. 3 and on a billboard on Veterans Memorial Highway in Ronkonkoma on Feb. 27, police said.
Hate Crimes detectives are investigating the incidents are bias crimes. The incidents are the latest in a recent string of swastikas that have been found on LI.
Last month, a swastika made of Silly String was found on a sidewalk in Jericho and two swastikas were found spray painted in a park in Massapequa. A 20-foot swastika was found dug into a Levittown ball field in December and that same month a Nassau Community College student was arrested for drawing swastikas around campus.
And in late November, swastikas were found spray painted along with the message “Make America White Again,” a play on President Donald Trump’s campaign slogan, on a sidewalk in Mineola.
In addition to these incidents, someone recently spray painted two swastikas on the side of a Pear Street home in Central Islip, Suffolk County police said. The homeowner reported the crime at 11 p.m. Monday, Feb. 20.
Under New York State law, swastika graffiti is considered aggravated first-degree harassment punishable by up to four years in prison and $5,000 in fines, plus restitution.
Suffolk County Crime Stoppers is offering a cash reward of up to $5,000 for information that leads to an arrest in the “Trump Lies” cases. Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.