Suspect arrested after Minnesota school tagged with swastika
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Suspect arrested after Minnesota school tagged with swastika

US authorities say ‘act of hatred’ caught on security footage, working with Jewish community in Edina on cultural understanding

Illustrative: Swastikas found drawn on an elementary school playground in Queens, New York, February 22, 2019. (YouTube screenshot)
Illustrative: Swastikas found drawn on an elementary school playground in Queens, New York, February 22, 2019. (YouTube screenshot)

EDINA, Minnesota  — US police have arrested a suspect in a Minneapolis suburb after a swastika and other offensive graffiti were found at an elementary school.

In an email to Edina School District families, Superintendent John Schultz wrote that “when an act of hatred occurs anywhere in Edina, it affects our entire community.”

Police said the arrest occurred Monday after the suspect was caught on security video. The vandalism at Concord Elementary School happened over the weekend.

The Star Tribune reported that Schultz said the district has turned to the Jewish Community Resource Council for guidance as they work through the issue.

“We strongly believe that these types of incidents are carried out by individuals who do not reflect the sentiments of the community as a whole,” he added. “They remind us, however, that we must be vigilant in our work around equity and cultural understanding. The future-readiness of our students depends on their ability to work collaboratively with others from vast numbers of cultures, religions and backgrounds.”

The development came after authorities on Monday arrested a known white supremacist on suspicion that he planned to blow up a synagogue in Colorado.

The suspect, named as Richard Holzer, 27, allegedly intended to use explosives to attack Temple Emanuel in the city of Pueblo, according to an affidavit filed on Saturday at the US District Court in Colorado. Holzer said he was preparing a “holy war” and claimed to have poisoned the water at the synagogue with arsenic and was planning to do so again.

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