Almost a dozen lawn signs depicting the Israeli flag have been stolen from yards in town, officials say.
In her newsletter, Wilton First Selectwoman Lynne Vanderslice said residents have reported theft of lawn signs displaying the Israeli flag over the last few days.
“The Wilton Police are actively investigating,” she said. “The thefts are not only illegal, but are acts of antisemitism that won’t be tolerated in Wilton.”
Vanderslice said residents should report any stolen sign to the Wilton Police Department in order to assist them in their work identifying the suspects. She shared a map of the locations in town where the signs were stolen from, and said there were seven taken as of Tuesday and three more reported stolen Wednesday morning.
“If you live in the area of any of these locations and saw something, please report it to the police,” she said. “If you have outside cameras, please check your cameras and pass along any video of potential interest to the police. Let’s all be vigilant as a means of showing support.”
The news comes after other towns in Connecticut have reported vandalism against signs showing support for Israel, as well as a rise in antisemitic actions.
In Stamford, swastikas were found painted in different locations in two separate incidents at the Academy of Information Technology & Engineering, officials said Tuesday.
Over the weekend, officials in Westport and Weston said red hand prints recently appeared on signs of the flag of Israel over the weekend. Officials in both towns condemned the vandalism, citing them as evidence of rising antisemitism.
Also in Westport, Superintendent Thomas Scarice sent a message to the school community Monday evening about a video circulating on social media. He said it was an “appalling, distressing video that was addressed swiftly and firmly by the administration,” but said they could not share details about its contents due to student privacy laws.
On Oct. 13, someone called in a bomb threat to Congregation Beth Israel in West Hartford. The call was later determined by police to be a hoax.
Then, on Tuesday, police said a swastika was found carved into the window in the men’s bathroom at the Darien Train Station on West Avenue.
Earlier this month, Hamas, an extremist group based in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, launched a surprise attack on Israel in multiple locations. The attack resulted in the death of more than 1,400 Israelis.
Israel then declared war on Hamas, and its military strikes have killed at least 8,500 people as of Oct. 31, including more than 3,500 children, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.
Before the attack, Connecticut had been experiencing other instances of harassment aimed at the Jewish community. Earlier in October, a synagogue in Hamden closed for most of the day after someone emailed a bomb threat on Oct. 5. Congregation Mishkan Israel was later cleared by police and reopened.
This past summer, antisemitic flyers were found posted around Westport.
The Anti-Defamation League, an organization that combats antisemitism and extremism, reported in March that antisemitic incidents in Connecticut doubled in 2022 compared with 2021.
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