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Glendale woman charged with vandalizing comfort women memorial

Jackie Rita Williams, 65, is charged with six counts of vandalism and one count of violation of civil rights on suspicion of vandalizing Glendale’s Korean Comfort Women Peace Monument and for writing racist graffiti.
Jackie Rita Williams, 65, is charged with six counts of vandalism and one count of violation of civil rights on suspicion of vandalizing Glendale’s Korean Comfort Women Peace Monument and for writing racist graffiti.
(Tim Berger / Glendale News-Press)

A 65-year-old Glendale woman was charged on Tuesday with six counts of vandalism and one count of violation of civil rights after authorities say she defaced a memorial and wrote racist graffiti on several buildings.

The misdemeanor charges were levied against Jackie Rita Williams, who was arrested by the Glendale Police Department late last month on suspicion of vandalizing the city’s Korean Comfort Women Peace Monument.

The Los Angeles County district attorney’s office also claims Williams wrote bigoted messages on several buildings, including the Armenian-American Council on Aging and the Joyful Christian Community Church.

Sgt. Dan Suttles, a police spokesman, previously said both the memorial’s defacement and racist graffiti were done using permanent marker. When officers arrested Williams she was found in possession of different-colored markers.

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Security camera footage from Glendale Central Park, where the memorial is located, shows a person matching Williams’ description scrawling all over the statue with a marker.

The person can then be seen kicking over several potted plants arranged around the memorial, which honors women who were forced into sex slavery during World War II.

No motive has been given for the vandalism, and Suttles said Williams has been tight-lipped with investigators.

If convicted, she faces a maximum of seven years in jail. Williams is currently being held on $25,000 bail.

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