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PUBLIC RELATIONS UNIT

DECEMBER 17, 2023

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact Information: PolicePRUnit@slcgov.com

Media Request Form: https://slcpd.com/mediarequest/

SLCPD Investigating Criminal Mischief, Possible Hate Crime at Bonneville Elementary

SALT LAKE CITY — The Salt Lake City Police Department is investigating an incident at Bonneville Elementary as a potential hate crime.

This investigation started at 11:22 a.m. on Sunday, December 17, 2023, when a community member reported finding hate speech sprayed on the property of Bonneville Elementary, located at 1145 South 1900 East.

Officers responded and found several instances of hate speech sprayed in red and purple paint and white chalk.

The criminal mischief included racist, homophobic, and antisemitic hate speech. Additionally, officers found hate speech directed at people living with physical disabilities.

Officers are working with the school district to review surveillance footage from the school which may help with the investigation.

Because the suspect or suspects used hate speech during and in the furtherance of the criminal mischief, this case will be referred to SLCPD detectives as a potential hate crime.

The criminal mischief is believed to have occurred sometime between Friday afternoon and Sunday morning.

Community members living around the school are asked to check their home security systems to see if they recorded any suspicious activity occurring.

The Salt Lake City Police Department acknowledges the Salt Lake School District for their full cooperation with this investigation.

The Salt Lake City Police Department’s Crime Lab responded to process the scene.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to call 801-799-3000 and reference case number 23-282047.

Several photos from the scene are being released. The Salt Lake City Police Department is not releasing the full images. Media may use these photos with credit to the Salt Lake City Police Department.

A Salt Lake City Police Department Public Information Officer (PIO) responded to the scene.

The Salt Lake City Police Department recognizes our responsibility to investigate hate crimes thoroughly and impartially to hold offenders accountable and ensure justice for survivors. The Salt Lake City Police Department educates its officers and detectives and works with our community to recognize, and condemn, hate crimes, and works to prevent them from occurring in the future.

The Department is a part of the “Community Partners Against Hate” initiative that brings city, regional, and state leaders together to condemn hate. In 2023, the group released a PSA to “Stand Up to Hate and Report.”

The effects of a hate crime can be devastating and long-lasting for both the individual victim and the larger community.

If you are the survivor of a hate crime or witness a hate crime, it is important to report it to the appropriate authorities so the case can be investigated, and support and resources offered.

• Call 9-1-1: If the crime is in-progress or there is an immediate threat to the safety of yourself or others.

• File a police report by calling 801-799-3000 and ask to speak with an officer about filing a hate crime report.

• Request assistance from an SLCPD Victim Advocate. You can call 801-799-3000 and ask to speak with a victim advocate or call 801-580-7969 24/7.

Photo: A close up photo of purple spray paint depicting hate speech at a Salt Lake City elementary school (SLCPD photo, December 17, 2023).

Photo: A close up photo of red spray paint written on a Salt Lake City elementary school (SLCPD photo, December 17, 2023).

Photo: A close up photo of black spray paint written on a Salt Lake City elementary school (SLCPD photo, December 17, 2023).

Photo: A photo of a red spray paint can top found at a Salt Lake City elementary school (SLCPD photo, December 17, 2023).

 Photo: A close up photo of black spray paint written on a Salt Lake City elementary school (SLCPD photo, December 17, 2023).

 

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