A donated mural on the Langley Baseball clubhouse and concession in Langley City was defaced with anti-Semitic slurs and a swastika.
Graffiti declaring “Hitler rules” and anti-Jewish comments, some of them obscene, was spray-painted on the exterior sometime between Saturday night, March 25 and Sunday morning, March 26.
Dan McLaren, senior vice president of the Little League club, called it “deplorable.”
“It’s a hate crime,” McLaren told the Langley Advance Times.
“This is the first time we’ve had tagging of this sort.”
McLaren has reported the incident to Langley RCMP and the City.
“We’re taking this seriously,” McLaren said.
“If we find out who it is, we want to charge them. This is unacceptable.”
McLaren noted the incident comes as the club was preparing to resume play, at a time when membership in the Little League ball club, which encompasses all of Langley City and all of Langley Township, is growing, from 614 kids last year to 760 this year, with an increase in the number of teams from 53 to 62.
“We have over 700 kids from ages four and up who could see this, and I don’t want that to happen,” McLaren said.
In 2021, the colourful murals were painted on the clubhouse in City Park by Langley City artist Judy Pohl as a gift from the Downtown Langley Business Association to the city and the Langley Baseball Association.
McLaren said the mural was coated with an anti-graffiti finish that should make it easier to remove the messages.
The incident at the Little League club comes after someone vandalized the gate to a Langley townhouse that has been flying the Ukraine flag since the Russian invasion earlier this month by spray-painting anti-Ukraine graffiti.
Langley Baseball Association has more than 50 years experience as a Little League ball club, hosting many district and provincial tournaments.
The City Park facility has four diamonds and a batting cage, along with the clubhouse and concession.
Have a story tip? Email: email@example.com
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.