WEST CHESTER (August 23) – State Senator Andy Dinniman called on residents and community members to continue to stand together against bigotry, prejudice, and hate after graffiti featuring swastikas and racial epithets appeared in the City of Coatesville and Valley Township earlier this week.

“Let me perfectly clear: there is absolutely no room for this kind of hate in our communities. Not now. Not here in Chester County. Not anywhere,” Dinniman said. “We must continue to come together and renounce this for what it is – unacceptable garbage.

“We must reaffirm the very values upon which our county was founded – values of tolerance and freedom that emanated from Chester County’s Quaker tradition, have been reaffirmed by other faith traditions, and are a fundamental part of our Commonwealth and ultimately our nation,” he added.

Local police are actively investigating multiple reports of racist graffiti that appeared in both the City of Coatesville and Valley Township earlier this week. The Coatesville Police Department is investigating vandalism at three sites in the city’s western edge: a car, a garage door, and the wall of a convenience store located at Valley Road and Stroud Ave. In Valley Township, multiple areas were vandalized including street signs and the street pavement.

Based on the type of paint used and writing, police believe this was all done by the same individual or individuals. It is estimated that the vandalism occurred between 3 and 4 a.m. in the early morning hours of Tuesday, August 22.

Local law enforcement professionals are reviewing security camera footage for leads. If you have any information related to these crimes, please contact Coatesville Police at (610) 383-7000. Tips can also be made by texting “Coatesville” + your tip to 847411 or online here.

“Sadly, this appears to be part of a larger trend that’s occurring all over the country. Earlier this year, we saw the desecration of a Jewish cemetery in Northeast Philadelphia. It is extremely disturbing, disappointing, and disgusting that after how far we’ve come as a nation that such hate still exists, but it does and our region is not immune to it,” Dininiman said. “Still, cowards who vandalize under cover of night will not intimidate us. The steel of our communities is in our diversity. The strength of our nation is in our unity. In the words of Dr. King, ‘We must live together as brothers or perish together as fools.’”

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