ITHACA, N.Y. –– The Ithaca Police Department has internally identified a suspect after at least three businesses in downtown Ithaca were vandalized with anti-Semitic and racist graffiti and posters over the weekend. Upon investigation, police uncovered materials for homemade explosives and firearms at the suspect’s residence and at another “undisclosed location.”
This weekend’s crimes followed a similar incident last week that included the defacement of a sign outside a local chiropractor’s office.
At this time the suspect is not being named, and their status is unknown except for that they are, “not out in the community,” according to an IPD press release. However, police did say in their release that they plan to pursue multiple counts of Criminal Mischief in the fourth degree as a Hate Crime.
According to police, law enforcement uncovered more hate posters, rifle parts, numerous items consistent with explosives such as fuse wire, caps, a timer, tubing and an “undisclosed amount of a powdered chemical” during their investigation.
On the subject of the crimes, IPD Chief Dennis Nayor has assured that police are taking the matter extremely seriously and has applauded his department for their diligence saying, “there is no tolerance for any acts of targeted hatred and bigotry in our community. We at the Ithaca Police Department will always put all resources and energies towards addressing such incidents and as a result we were able to quickly identify the person involved and prevent any further criminal acts from occurring.”
IPD has been assisted in their investigation by the New York State Police and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
The investigation into the suspect is ongoing, and law enforcement said that more information will soon be available.