NYPD investigating after 2 swastikas surface in Harlem

HARLEM — An investigation is underway in Harlem where police are trying to figure out who painted at least two swastikas along Morningside Drive.

One of them, right outside PS180.

“I didn’t know what to think,” resident Gregory Locke told PIX11. “This isn’t the first time I’ve seen a swastika in New York.”

Locke says he was baffled when he stumbled upon what appeared to be a swastika painted along Morningside Drive near West 120th Street in Harlem Tuesday morning.

The roadway which is under construction had a number of markings but these particular markings just did not sit right with Locke who lives 3 blocks away.

“I try not to jump to conclusions so do I think it’s threatening, I don’t know maybe it is,” he said. “If somebody did it as a joke, it’s not funny.”

PIX11 was on the scene when NYPD officers arrived to investigate.

Finding not only the hate symbol painted on the pavement which was covered up with new markings, but another swastika painted on a tree five blocks away in front of the Grant Houses on 125th Street.

“I am shocked I’ve lived here my whole life and I’ve never ever seen no swastika nowhere around here,” resident Shatima Scott said.

New Jersey-based Denville Line Painting is currently working in the area, painting traffic lines on the recently paved road.

Workers told police they saw a man spray painting the road and a few trees last Friday.

A spokesperson for the company told PIX11, workers called police but according to the NYPD, a report was never made, raising more questions.

“Now that I see what’s going on we’re going to be more vigilant,” Scott said.

Investigators are hoping surveillance cameras in the area offer up some clues to who is behind the hate speech.