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University of Michigan regent’s law office vandalized with pro-Palestinian graffiti

Updated June 3, 2024 - 5:02 pm

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. — Pro-Palestinian graffiti spray-painted on the exterior of a Michigan law firm is being investigated as a hate crime, police in suburban Detroit said Monday.

University of Michigan regent and attorney Jordan Acker called the vandalism “antisemitic” and said staff at the Goodman Acker law firm’s Southfield headquarters discovered it Monday morning.

Splotches of red paint were left on the “Goodman Acker” sign above the building’s doors. “FREE PALESTINE” was spray-painted in black upon the building’s walls, while “DIVEST NOW” and “U-M KILLS” — a reference to the University of Michigan — were spray-painted in red upon at least one window and a sidewalk.

Southfield Police Chief Elvin Barren said investigators believe the graffiti was left between 1:39 and 1:46 a.m. Monday. The FBI and other agencies are assisting in the investigation.

“Make no mistake that targeting individual Jewish elected officials is antisemitism,” Acker, who is Jewish, told reporters.

“This has nothing to do with Palestine or the war in Gaza or anything else,” Acker continued. “This is done as a message to scare Jews. I was not targeted here today because I am a regent. I am a target of this because I am Jewish.”

Also, at Columbia University, students dismantled a third pro-Palestinian encampment overnight Sunday, before police entered campus to document vandalism at the Morningside Heights institution’s latest tent city.

The 48-hour camp, which coincided with reunion weekend, called on Columbia alumni to withhold donations from the university until it divests from Israel.

“We will be back,” the campus chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine wrote on social media.

Meanwhile, police on Monday arrested pro-Palestinian demonstrators who occupied the lobby of a San Francisco building that houses the Israeli Consulate.

A group of pro-Palestinian demonstrators entered the building and occupied it for several hours Monday. The protesters posted signs on the front doors of the building calling for an end to the Israel-Hamas war.

Consul General of Israel to the Pacific Northwest Marco Sermoneta said the protesters arrived around 9 a.m. at the Financial District’s high-rise but didn’t enter the consulate’s offices. He said his office was telling people that they might need to change their appointments.

San Francisco police officers were standing guard outside the building and told an AP journalist that it was not open to the public.

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