Residents reflect on hate crime at gay center

By Matthew Artz
Friday October 11, 2002

Members of a gay and lesbian community center say they were shocked to find the find the word “Fag!” and a swastika scribbled on their outdoor bulletin board earlier this week, as reported in the Daily Planet Oct. 8. 

“This is the first hate graffiti we’ve ever had,” said Frank Gurucharri, executive director at the Pacific Center for Human Growth. “We rarely even get any hate phone calls.”  

Gurucharri said he and other members first spotted the nine inch black ink letters at about 9:30 a.m. Monday. Police believe the center was vandalized sometime Sunday night, but they don’t have any suspects. 

The center is located on the 2700 block of Telegraph Ave. 

Since the initial shock of the incident, Gurucharri said he has been comforted by kind words from local residents. 

“The police took the call very seriously,” he said, adding that owners of neighboring businesses also expressed their outrage at the crime. 

In response to the incident, the Pacific Center and the office of Councilmember Kriss Worthington held a candlelight vigil outside the center at 6:30 p.m. Thursday evening. 


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