Man Arrested on Hate Crime Charge Over Spray-Painted Swastikas in Revere

"We will not allow hatred in our city and we must continue to call it out and address it," the mayor said

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A man was arrested on hate crime and vandalism charges Tuesday stemming from swastikas spray-painted on a car in Revere, Massachusetts, and the phrase "white power" graffitied on the street, according to police.

Jason Pagliuca, a 38-year-old Revere resident, was arraigned Wednesday afternoon in Chelsea District Court on the pair of charges. He was released on his own recognizance and required to be monitored by GPS, the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office said.

The acts of vandalism on Lantern Road were discovered June 11 and decried by the group Moroccan American Connections in Revere as a danger that residents needed to be aware of. The owner of the car, who wishes to remain anonymous is being represented by the Council on American-Islamic Relations' Massachusetts chapter, is happy to hear about the arrest, the advocacy group said in a statement.

"She greatly appreciates the investigation that was done by the Revere police that led to an arrest, as well as the outpouring of support she has received from the community and even from total strangers," said Barbara J. Dougan, civil rights director of CAIR-MA.

A rally against hate was held at Revere City Hall Friday.

"Sadly, this crime is an example of the racism many of our residents experience on an ongoing basis," Revere Mayor Brian Arrigo said in a statement. "We will not allow hatred in our city and we must continue to call it out and address it. I look forward to the continued work with leaders and stakeholders across our city toward an anti-racist Revere."

Detectives connected the crime to Pagliuca after receiving a tip from the public that allowed them to obtain a warrant to search his home, police said. There, evidence was found tying him to the case and leading to his arrest.

Police didn't say what that evidence was. It wasn't immediately clear if Pagliuca had an attorney who could speak to the charges.

“The arrest in this case should serve as a warning to anyone who seeks to intimidate or spread hate in our city,” incoming police Chief Dave Callahan said in a statement.

The owner of the spray-painted car has had it vandalized before, according to CAIR-MA, which released a short statement from her sayin, “at least this time, someone was arrested. I used to lie awake at night, worrying about my car. Now I feel safer.”

The organization had offered $1,000 leading to the arrest of the person responsible for spray-painting the symbols of hate on the street in Revere.

In addition to the GPS monitoring, Pagliuca must stay away from the victim and take all his prescribed medications, prosecutors said. He is due back in court Aug. 20.

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