St. Catharines Councilman’s House latest to be targeted in hate vandalism
Police are investigating an incident of vandalism at the home of an Ontario city councilor on Wednesday morning, an action the victim said “went overboard.”
Kerrie Porter, a counselor in St. Catharines, told CTV News Toronto she was first told about the graffiti by a neighbor who was walking the dog around 6 a.m. She immediately called the police, before she even got out.
âIt’s not something I really expected to find out and I don’t live alone, I have two kids and I’m married. I have a husband and I have neighbors. So they don’t deserve this, âshe said over the phone.
In the photographs of the graffiti, which were posted to social media by Porter, the words “Scary Karrie is a Karen” and “United Non-Conformance” are spray-painted black on her house. There is also a third message which includes hateful and vulgar language.
Porter said the act was not an isolated incident, adding that over the past four or five months several politicians have been targeted, including the mayor of St. Catharines and the chief medical officer of Niagara.
According to social media, Mayor Walter Sendzik’s house and car were spray painted with “foul language” in September. Porter added that anti-vaccine protesters gathered outside Dr Mustafa Hirji’s home on Tuesday evening.
Given the trend, Porter believes the acts of vandalism are linked to the anti-vaccine movement. Police did not confirm this, but said they were aware of a reported St. Catharines incident of vandalism overnight and was “currently under investigation”.
“At this time, this is still under investigation, as such we are unable to provide further information,” a Niagara Regional Police spokesperson said Wednesday.
Porter says the acts “definitely crossed a line.”
âI think they are disturbing and I have received many messages of support from people all over Ontario and many politicians who have sent me private messages telling me they had to install cameras. and that they have faced this type of targeted harassment, “she said.” I know people are really struggling right now, but this is not the way to go.
âIt doesn’t help. It is a policy of hatred, fear and division.
Porter said she hopes to use this as a learning moment for her children, who have since seen the hate messages, but at the same time, she wishes she didn’t have to.
âIt’s demoralizing for the people, not just for me and the other politicians, but for the people in the community who don’t want this to happen to their elected officials. And I mean to people who are considering running for office, don’t let that put you off. If you’re going to do that, we need good, strong people who love their community and want to make a better society to scale up, âshe said.
âBecause if we let that deter us, then they win. And we’re better than that.
Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the police or contact Crime Stoppers anonymously.