Police Investigating Graffiti Vandalism in Park Restroom as Hate Crime

Published on May 11, 2021

Palo Alto, CA Police are investigating a vandalism case at a park as a hate crime, as an unknown suspect used a marker to write racial epithets inside a bathroom.

On Friday, May 7, 2021, at about 7:39 p.m., our 24-hour dispatch center received a call of a vandalism that had just been discovered at El Camino Park at 155 El Camino Real.  The reporting party, a passerby, told police that he had observed racial slurs written on the walls inside a park restroom.

Officers responded and observed writings in black marker in several areas on the bathroom, including on the stalls and walls.  The writings included racial epithets directed at white people.  A Public Works crew promptly removed them.  Police believe the incident occurred on either Thursday or Friday, May 6 or 7.  There is no suspect information at this time, nor is there any known connection between this case and a hate crime vandalism reported at Heritage Park on March 21, 2021.  To view details on that case, read the news release we distributed about it on March 23.

In the wake of recent national events and increased attention on hate crimes, the personnel of the Palo Alto Police Department continue to show their commitment to thoroughly investigate any reported hate crimes in Palo Alto.  In late March, the Palo Alto City Council denounced violence directed at people of Asian descent, and that came on the heels of months of efforts with City Council’s ongoing conversations and work on race and equity.  You are welcome to read a blog post from the City entitled “Steps the Community Can Take to Help Stop Hate Crimes.”  The City of Palo Alto strongly denounces hate crimes of all kinds, and encourages members of our community to promptly report these incidents by calling our 24-hour dispatch center at (650) 329-2413, or 9-1-1 if it is an emergency.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call our 24-hour dispatch center at (650) 329-2413.  Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to paloalto@tipnow.org or sent via text message or voice mail to (650) 383-8984.

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