Portland police: St. John St. market vandalism a hate crime

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PORTLAND — Early morning vandalism Sunday at a market that caters to the Muslim community is being investigated as a hate crime, Assistant Police Chief Vern Malloch said in a press release.

Police are looking for a white man who was wearing a black hooded sweat shirt, seen on video spray painting an anti-Muslim phrase outside the Portland Halaal Market, 269 St. John St.,at 5 a.m. The vandalism was reported at 9 a.m., Malloch said.

Police referred the incident to the Maine attorney general’s office, Malloch said.

Anyone with information about the incident was asked to call police at 874-8584. Tips can also be sent by email to portland-police.com or by text to 274637 with the keyword “GOTCHA” and the tip.