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Update: Northwest vandalism being treated as a hate crime

Police now say that five incidents of vandalism in Northwest Baltimore - in which vehicles were spray painted with swastikas and "Hitler" - are being treated as hate crimes. Spokesman Anthony Guglielmi wasn't able to provide much details as to what changed in the investigation since the weekend when the graffiti was first reported, though he said investigators have surveillance tape of at least one of the incidents and have conducted additional interviews with the victims.

Arthur Abramson, the executive director of the Baltimore Jewish Council, said Wednesday that he had pressed the highest levels of the city police command staff to label these incidents hate crimes, and reporter Peter Hermann tells me that he received many emails this morning from residents expressing frustration that police hadn't done so.

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A community meeting will be held tonight at the Jewish Community Center on Park Heights Avenue to discuss the incidents. 

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