WAUKEGAN, Ill.  – Authorities are trying to determine who vandalized a Jewish cemetery in Waukegan.

Officers responded to the Congregation Am Echod Jewish Cemetery located in the 3000 block of Grand Avenue around 8 a.m. Monday for reports of criminal damage. 

Upon arrival, officers located 16 headstones had been defaced with large red spray-painted swastikas. Police said 23 other headstones were defaced with non-specific graffiti.

The vandalization is under investigation. Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call the Waukegan Police Department Tip-Line at 847-360-9001.

Waukegan Mayor Ann B. Taylor released the following statement:

“I am deeply disturbed and angered by the hateful imagery found spray-painted on headstones this morning in Am Echod Jewish Cemetery. Hate does not have a home in Waukegan; when such incidents occur, our marginalized neighbors are victimized, and our entire community suffers. I hope our officers promptly locate the perpetrators of this despicable act and hold them accountable, and I offer my full support to those directly impacted by this vandalism.”

Waukegan Mayor Ann B. Taylor