Aside from the unseasonably warm weather, it was an average morning for Oceanside’s Hubert family on Feb. 21. But just after Sherry Hubert’s husband left for work around 7 a.m., he suddenly returned.
“Oh my goodness, you’re not going to believe this,” he told her.
Leading Sherry outside, he showed her four crude depictions of male genitalia spray painted in blue on the couple’s driveway. Suspecting there was more, they searched around the property. An “F U” was scrawled on their fence, in the same color, and a further search revealed more drawings on a neighboring property and a utility pole across the street.
But what they found next, Hubert said, prompted them to contact the police. “I probably would not have called the cops on the other stuff, but with the swastika, it takes it to a whole other level of stupidity.”
The blue swastika had been scribbled on the sidewalk in front of their Lincoln Avenue home. When Hubert spoke to the Herald, she had been working to scrub the image off the concrete.
“I’m annoyed, and a little upset,” she said, and theorized the culprits were likely teenagers enjoying a warm night on their winter vacation. “I think it’s dumb kids having nothing better to do,” she said. “It was a nice night … the kids are off from school, running amok.”
Police confirmed the incident, and sent a release at 12:38 p.m. that day. They reported that in addition to Hubert, another 54-year-old Lincoln Avenue resident had notified authorities of a “lewd drawing” painted on his fence.
Upon hearing of the swastika, local officials issued statements on the matter.
"Swastikas, and other graffiti, have absolutely no place in our community," State Sen. Todd Kaminsky said in a statement emailed to the Herald. "These cowardice acts of hatred will not be tolerated. The best part about Oceanside is its inclusiveness and I have no doubt that they will band together to show the world that love and tolerance always win."
Town Councilman Anthony D’Esposito also weighed in.
“Graffiti on its own is a huge problem here on Long Island, but the graffiti that was found in Oceanside today is downright criminal,” he said, and citing the number of World War II veterans that still live in the neighborhood, added that “Swastikas have no place in a free, democratic society … There is no place for hatred and bigotry of this sort in our township.”
Detectives asked that anyone with information related to the crime contact the Nassau County Crime Stoppers at 1 (800) 244- 8477
While acknowledging that it was likely the result of kids with too much time on their hands, Hubert said the image was particularly offensive in light of the large number of Jewish people who live in Oceanside. “It shouldn’t be tolerated,” she said. “They should know better.”