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Antisemitic hate speech keeps showing up in a Springfield community

A plaza outside the city hall in Springfield, Oregon. Steps lead up to the building in the background.
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Springfield Police said they are investigating antisemitic materials being left in parts of the city.

For the last few weeks, Springfield Police have been investigating incidents of antisemitic messaging left in Ziploc bags along the streets and sidewalks of Thurston.

According to Springfield Police, the clear bags contain dry corn kernels—meant to weigh them down—and fliers with “vulgar, hateful and antisemitic” language and images.

A detective is actively investigating the case.

SPD Public Information Officer Zak Gosa-Lewis said residents have been picking up the bags and either trashing them or taking them to police.

“Some of these bags are near schools, places of worship. They’re spread out through such a large area,” he said. “We just appreciate folks for taking the initiative to go and pick those up. We just want to say thank you and that we do hear that folks are upset and aren’t happy with these messages being out there. And we’re doing our absolute best to hopefully identify this and put a stop to it.”

Anyone with information, including visual evidence like security video, is asked to contact the Springfield Police Department.

Gosa-Lewis said the nature of any crime or possible charges largely depends on finding the individual(s) responsible, and whether anyone who found or received the hate speech filled bags would choose to press charges.

KEZI reports it's at least the second such incidence in Springfield in less than a month.

Antisemitism is often called the “world’s oldest hatred,” spanning nearly 2,000 years.

ABC News reported this week that the FBI is looking for a man who walked into a San Francisco synagogue with a pistol and fired several rounds, believed to be blanks. No one was injured and no damage was reported during the Wednesday evening incident at the Schneerson Jewish Center, the San Francisco Police Department said.

Tiffany joined the KLCC News team in 2007. She studied journalism at the University of Missouri-Columbia and worked in a variety of media including television, technical writing, photography and daily print news before moving to the Pacific Northwest.