The defacing of a campaign billboard in Newark is being investigated as a bias crime, said Lt. Ronald Glover, a spokesman for the Newark Police Department.
The billboard, in support of Councilman-At-Large Luis Quintana and North Ward Councilman Anibal Ramos, was vandalized earlier this week. A swastika was painted over Quintana’s face, and Ramos’ image was also altered. Quintana and Ramos are running on a slate with Mayor Ras Baraka, whose name also appeared on the billboard.
Glover said that the Essex County Prosecutor’s office has joined the investigation, which is ongoing. A video of the area where the billboard was located is being reviewed and enhanced as part of the ongoing probe.
Quintana, Ramos and Baraka are candidates in the May 8 municipal election.