MS-13 tag found spray-painted on Queens church, school

BAYSIDE, Queens (WABC) -- Police are investigating after seven locations, including a church and school, were vandalized by gang graffiti Sunday morning in Queens.

The Diocese of Brooklyn released surveillance video Wednesday of one incident that shows a suspect spray-painting "MS-13" on the walls near the main entrance of Sacred Heart of Jesus Roman Catholic Church in Bayside.

Catholic Academy was also marked with the letters "MS."

"My initial reaction when I heard about the vandalism was that I didn't know what to expect," said Monsignor Thomas Machalski, pastor of Sacred Heart of Jesus Roman Catholic Church. "I thought maybe windows were broken or our nativity had been vandalized and so in a sense, I was relieved that the damage to the Church was not more significant."

Machalski also had a message for the suspect involved in the vandalism act.

"To the perpetrator, I would encourage them to find something more constructive to do with their time and energy," he said. "Because the time they wasted on doing something like this, could be spent doing something good."

No arrests have been made.

The parish has security cameras monitoring the school entrance, and will now pursue the installation of security cameras for the entrance ways of the church.

The incident is currently being investigated by the NYPD's 111th Precinct and the Hate Crimes Task Force. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS (8477).

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