Swastikas and other hate messages carved into DU neighborhood cars

DENVER -- It’s happened again in the University neighborhood: Racially charged messages are being spread in the community. Swastikas and other symbols of hate were found carved into cars Tuesday morning.

Neighborhood resident Jane Giagni got a knock on her front door Tuesday morning. Her daughter’s car was vandalized and detectives notified her that hateful messages were keyed on the hood.

"It has a swastika and the KKK. So I was horrified. I want to get it fixed right away," said Giagni. "I think it's a hate crime. We live across from the Jewish Center. We've been good neighbors for years. All of us have been getting along great."

Denver police are not labeling it a hate crime as of now, but detectives did speak to Daniel Bennett, the Executive Director of the Hillel Center, anyway.

"We haven't received any explicit threats against us and we are grateful for that," said Bennett.

This neighborhood is no stranger to recent messages of hate. Last year, the University of Denver set up a free speech wall to share events and passions with the community, but then someone began writing racially-charged messages.

Some wonder if these recent events stem from the nation's current political climate.

"I don't know. There is more hate in the country today. I doubt it, but there may be more openness to people expressing hate and that bothers us," said Bennett.

Giagni hopes whoever is responsible is caught.

"I felt kind of helpless, there is really nothing we can do. Pay the deductible and go on, which really irks me," said Giagni.

Detectives believe the vandalism happened Monday overnight. Right now they don't have any suspects but are looking for any witnesses.


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