08-01-14 Web Release- Graffiti Investigation
The City of Carbondale Police Department is nearing the conclusion of a Department initiated investigation of sidewalk chalk graffiti which contained what has been reported as anti-Semitic statements. During the course of the investigation, several interviews have been conducted thus far, including interviews with the individuals who discovered the graffiti on Monday, July 28, 2014, at approximately 4:30 p.m., in the 400 block of West Elm Street. Officers learned they reported the incident to their landlord, who in turn, forwarded the information to the police department via electronic mail Tuesday evening. The individuals who discovered the graffiti were cooperative, but did not want to file a police report. The graffiti was several blocks away from their residence and there is no information at this time to indicate the graffiti was directed toward them or any other specific person. The graffiti in question was amongst a number of other sidewalk chalk graffiti and contained four words, which was an apparent attempt to compare or connect Nazism to those of Jewish faith and those of the Jewish faith to Palestine. A photograph of the graffiti is attached to this release. This graffiti, while certainly offensive in nature, contained no direct threat and neither did any of the other graffiti, which was present. The other graffiti consisted of words, phrases and short statements. Following the collection of evidence at the scene, the graffiti was removed from the sidewalk. Officers learned that the bulk of the graffiti has been attributed to several individuals who attended a nearby college house party, during which numerous individuals began authoring random words, phrases and statements with chalk on the sidewalk. At this time, the author of the specific graffiti in question has not been identified. The police department is requesting the public’s assistance in determining the identity of the author of the graffiti in question and the names of those persons who attended the house party, which reportedly occurred during the evening, between July 21 and July 24, 2014.
A representative of the SIU student Jewish organization was notified of the incident in order to attempt to increase the awareness of their membership and to request that anyone with information related to this incident or any other incident like this one immediately reports the information to the police department. Incidents of this nature will be fully investigated and those responsible will be arrested if it can be determined a violation of any criminal law has occurred.
Anyone with information about this incident is encouraged to contact the Police Department at (618) 457-3200 or Crime Stoppers at (618) 549-COPS (2677). Anonymous tips may also be made by selecting the “Crime Stoppers” tab located on the main page of this website.