CARMEL, Ind. -- The Anti-Defamation League announced Monday that it is offering a $2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever is responsible for painting Nazi graffiti at a Carmel synagogue.
Swastikas and iron crosses were discovered early Saturday morning on a shed and garbage bins at Congregation Shaarey Tefilla in the 3000 block of W. 116th Street.
"This heinous incident demonstrates, yet again, the need for Indiana to pass a hate crimes law and send the message that Hoosiers will not tolerate crimes targeting people because of who they are," said Lonnie Nasatir, ADL Midwest Regional Director.
On Monday, Gov. Eric Holcomb announced that he intends to file a hate crime law during the next session of the Indiana General Assembly. Indiana, Georgia, South Carolina, Arkansas, and Wyoming are the only states without hate crime laws.
Monday night, several hundred people showed up at Congregation Shaarey Tefilla for a Community Solidarity Gathering.
Rabbi Benjamin Sendrow says the vandalism has not made the Jewish community fearful; instead, it's made them strong.
"(It) triggered an outpouring of love and support that wipes away their action better than bleach and fresh paint," said Rabbi Sendrow. "All they have done is awaken the sleeping giant of love and acceptance and mutual respect."
Synagogue leaders say the graffiti will remain on the shed and garbage bins so it can be preserved as evidence as Carmel police and the FBI investigate
Anyone with information about the vandalism is encouraged to call the Carmel Police Department tipline at 317-571-2580.
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