Church in Elizabeth vandalized with hate messages

May 9, 2013 1:37:55 PM PDT
Vandals, target a New Jersey church and day care leaving racist graffiti and a hateful message.

Police are investigating the incident as a hate crime.

Just outside this classroom, where you hear the voices of children learning. Someone left an unwelcomed lesson of hate.

Swastikas, the number 666, inverted crosses, all spray-painted on the church's school building and its vans.

"We are disappointed in what happened. It's very clear someone went out of their way to demonize this institution," said Dr. David Jefferson.

Pastor Jefferson joined the school's owner, Pastor Steffie Bartley, and other community activists and law enforcement announcing an all out effort to find the culprits.

Bartley's 10-year-old daughter discovered the markings Sunday. She told her dad and also told him she understands what those hateful messages mean.

"That made me a little frightened that my 10 year old understands hate. That people do bad things," he said.

The state Attorney General's office and the Union County prosecutor's office are calling this a hate and bias crime.

"Things of this nature should not happen, especially to the most vulnerable people who do stupid stuff like this. We will do everything we can to bring them to justice," said Ted Romankow.