Bay Ridge

Swastika graffiti found at Bay Ridge pier

May 26, 2017 By John Alexander Brooklyn Daily Eagle
A hate symbol was found scrawled on a utility box at the edge of the American Veterans Memorial Pier at 69th Street in Bay Ridge. Photos courtesy of John Quaglione

City Council Candidate John Quaglione Takes Action

Just days before Memorial Day, as onlookers gathered on Thursday to watch the Parade of Ships below the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and sail through the Narrows into New York Harbor for Fleet Week celebrations, swastikas were found scrawled on a utility box and lamppost at the American Veterans Memorial Pier in Bay Ridge.

According to a police source, the complaint was filed with the 68th precinct. It was originally a criminal mischief complaint on the American Veterans Memorial pier. No arrests have been made and an investigation by the NYPD Hate Crime Taskforce is ongoing.

A call was made to state Sen. Marty Golden’s office. Golden’s chief of staff and City Council candidate John Quaglione quickly responded and headed down to the pier to assess the situation. Upset by what he saw, he returned later with cans of yellow and silver spray paint to cover over the hateful graffiti.

“There were four swastika drawings in total, one on the yellow box at the very end of the pier and three others on the lamppost,” Quaglione told the Brooklyn Eagle. “As soon we were informed about this, we went out and bought the yellow and silver paint.”

“My first inclination,” explained Quaglione, “was to just paint over everything. But after I painted over the yellow box, the police asked us not to paint over any of the others because they were sending the hate crime unit in to investigate.

“It’s a frightening reminder that religious intolerance still exists and is still on people’s minds,” said Quaglione. “And it’s frightening that something like this can happen in your own backyard. What is especially disturbing is that someone would go down to the American Veterans Memorial Pier a few days before Memorial Day and do this.

“This country was founded on religious freedom and liberty and for someone to commit such a despicable act will not be tolerated in our community, especially a few days before we celebrate the brave men who fought and died for our freedom,” added Quaglione.

“The fact that this is happening is beyond alarming. It’s sick and disgusting. We were glad to clean it up. Children should not be exposed to this kind of hate. No one should be exposed to something like this,” he said.

“This neighborhood is a testament to the world that people of all races and religions can co-exist and we just won’t stand for this kind of intolerance.”