Updated – 3:35 p.m. – Swastikas and other inappropriate images were spray-painted on school banners, sidewalks and telephone poles at Burning Tree Elementary School in Bethesda over the weekend, according to Assistant Principal Gabby Bellagamba.
Bellagamba sent an email to parents late Sunday night informing them that Montgomery County police are investigating the incident. The assistant principal said the graffiti has been covered and “will be removed as soon as possible.”
Gboyinde Onijala, a Montgomery County Public Schools spokeswoman, said maintenance crews will be at the school Monday to remove the graffiti.
Police said Monday the vandalism was reported on Sunday morning by a member of a Jewish congregation that holds weekly services at the school. An image of male genitalia was also spray painted on the banner, which was posted near the school entrance, according to police. The school is at 7900 Beech Tree Road.
Police are asking anyone who may have information about the vandalism to call them at 240-773-6710.
The incident is the second act of hate-based vandalism reported in the county this month. Police said someone used a caustic substance to burn a swastika and an image of male genitalia onto the football field at Quince Orchard High School in Gaithersburg around midnight Oct. 13. Last week, police released a surveillance image of a dark-colored car that may have been involved in that incident.