A video shared on Twitter on Sunday morning garnered public outrage, showing two young individuals laughing to each other as they drew a large anti-Semitic symbol on a South Kitchener driveway.
The video saw responses from several notable community members, including Regional Police Chief Bryan Larkin.
Jason Hynes, whose family resides in one of the homes, said he was shocked on Saturday when he and his wife were leaving their south Kitchener home to go out for an early evening dinner.
Hynes says he noticed chalk drawings in his driveway --– not an unusual sight as he has three children of his own.
“As I looked closer it was clear nothing our kids had done… it was actually swastikas, n-words (…) some other hateful language. We noticed it was also on our next-door neighbours (property) – we immediately rang their doorbell and let them know…”
Hynes says his neighbour checked their security camera footage and found that the two youths had been caught on video around 5:30 p.m.
From there, Hynes says he contacted Waterloo Regional Police, and has since been in contact as well with both Mayor Vrbanovic and Mayor Jaworsky.
Jason, thx for making me aware of this disgusting & hateful action. It angers me that 2 young ppl would do this on any property. As a society we need to ask ourselves what brings about such hate in a young person & how do we prevent it. I will be asking @WRPSToday to follow-up.— Berry Vrbanovic (@berryonline) August 30, 2020
“This kind of stuff has no place in our society – no place in our community. It just can’t be tolerated… especially now with everything happening” says Hynes.
“Internationally, but particularly in the U.S. in Canada. We need to take this seriously and we need to stop this kind of behaviour”.
After contacting police, Hynes had said he had intended to put up posters in his community to try and identify the youths responsible.
As of Sunday evening, the video of the teens has been removed from Hynes twitter account - replaced with a message that says the minors in the video have been identified, and that both parents have since apologized.
Regional Police have also released a statement, in which they acknowledge that the youths have been identified, and that the investigation is ongoing.
WRPS is aware of two individuals writing inappropriate words & hate motivated graffiti on two driveways near Hearthwood Dr in Kitchener.— Waterloo Regional Police (@WRPSToday) August 30, 2020
Two youths have been identified in connection to this incident. The investigation remains ongoing by our Hate Crime unit & @wrps_inclusion. pic.twitter.com/hK9XdplP5f