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Orange Coast College restroom vandalized with swastika and possible immigration message

Orange Coast College restroom vandalized with swastika and possible immigration message
A bathroom near the campus science building at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa was vandalized with a swastika and the phrase “Legal means legal” on Tuesday. (File Photo)

A bathroom at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa was vandalized with a swastika this week, officials said.

A faculty member discovered graffiti that included the swastika and the words “Legal equals legal” written in what appeared to be black marker in a men’s restroom near the campus science building Tuesday, said OCC Director of Public Safety Jim Rudy.

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The restrooms are locked overnight and open at about 6 a.m., the college said.

Because the graffiti included what was considered hate-related content, the Campus Safety Department informed the Orange County Intelligence Assessment Center, which collects, analyzes and disseminates information on possible criminal risks and safety threats.

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The “Legal means legal” message “may refer to immigration,” Rudy said.

The graffiti was quickly removed, he said.

The incident came after a week of violence and vandalism targeting Jewish places of worship, including in Orange County. It also came as immigration has been a hot-button topic in political rhetoric.

Incidents of hateful graffiti at Orange Coast College are “very, very rare,” Rudy said.

Public safety officers notified students, faculty and staff of this week’s occurrence in an email Wednesday.

Some campus community members expressed disappointment about the incident in a discussion forum on an Orange Coast College mobile app, Rudy said.

“One individual commented, ‘Zero tolerance nowadays … just hate and stupidity,’ ” Rudy said.

The commenter also asked, “Don’t they have cameras?”

There are no surveillance cameras in campus restroom facilities, Rudy said.

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