North Bay Village police detectives are investigating a swastika and other hate symbols etched on a sidewalk.
Police Chief Carlos Noriega believes the vandalism happened Wednesday night or early Thursday. Public works employees had just poured cement around a yellow fire hydrant they had repaired near 1801 S. Treasure Dr. in a residential neighborhood of the island town that links Miami and Miami Beach.
“We consider this a hate crime,” Noriega said, adding that the detectives were canvassing the neighborhood and looking for possible video cameras that might have recorded the incident from the nearby buildings.
In addition to the swastika, a pentagram, several footprints and the name “Isabel” had been inscribed in the cement. Noriega said his officers are also trying to identify women and girls with the same name.
Asked about the small footprints, Noriega said, “It would be disturbing if it were kids, but it’s a little early to have” any suspects or leads.
Village Manager Frank Rollason received an email Thursday morning alerting him to the defaced sidewalk.
In the three years he has served in his post, Rollason hasn’t seen anything like that in the village, he said. The community, home to a little more than 7,000 residents straddling the 79th Street Causeway, consists of North Bay Island, with single-family residences; Harbor Island, with mostly multi-family buildings; and Treasure Island, a mixture of both types of dwellings, known for having its street names drawn from Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel “Treasure Island.”
In addition to the police investigation, North Bay Village is drawing up plans for a community outreach program to address the issue.