Man arrested for defacing menorah with Nazi symbols on first night of Hanukkah in Beverly Hills

Eric Brian King, 47, of Dallas, Texas, was arrested on charges of hate crimes and felony vandalism

Graeme Massie
Los Angeles
Tuesday 20 December 2022 21:20 GMT

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California police have arrested a man who allegedly vandalized a menorah in Beverly Hills and carved a Nazi symbol on it on the first night of Hanukkah.

Beverly Hills Police Department says that Eric Brian King, 47, of Dallas, Texas, was taken into on charges of hate crimes and felony vandalism, according to CBS News.

Officials say that the menorah, which sits on private property, was damaged on Sunday night with the suspect accused of throwing rocks at it and carving the SS symbol into its base.

“A despicable act such as this will never be tolerated in our City,” Police Chief Mark G Stainbrook said in a statement to CBS News.

Mr King is being held in the custody of the Beverly Hills Police Department on a $20,000 bail, according to online records.

Beverly Hills Police Lt. Giovanni Trejo told CBS News: “The suspect was located with the assistance of the police department’s Real Time Watch Center ... after surveillance video depicted him throwing objects at a Menorah. The initial investigation revealed that King carved Nazi symbols into the base of the Menorah.”

Aaron Newman, whose family owns the display. told the outlet that “when darkness hits, we provide more light and we shine the light brighter than ever.”

“Yesterday we had one flood light, and now we have two. We’re shining the light brighter than ever,” he added. “There’s antisemitism happening left, right and centre but it wasn’t hitting me.”

Hate crime reports across Los Angeles are up 13 per cent in 2022 over last year’s record-setting levels, according to LAPD Chief Michel Moore.

Chief Moore blamed rhetoric on social media for the increase and singled out Kanye West for his string of antisemitic rants and interviews.

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