by Ben Verde and Zack Daniel Schiavetta
Several posters depicting images of Adolph Hitler and swastikas were found posted around campus Sunday morning.
University Police are currently investigating the incident, and have identified a suspect according to a campus wide email from Dennis Craig Officer in Charge.
"Messages of hate, while become more and more prevalent in our country, have no place on our campus and will be treated with the utmost severity," Craig wrote.
Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a statement that he is "disgusted" and that the New York State Police Hate Crimes unit is also investigating.
Chief of Police Dayton Tucker said UPD started investigating the posters as soon as they were reported.
"The posters were reported to UPD and a student mentioned the dialogue from the open forum so we were able to begin an investigation right away," said Tucker. "This community belongs to all of us and we appreciate that the students came forward so quickly. It makes a big difference."
The campus community first learned of the posters from a post on the SUNY Purchase Open Forum.
This is one of several hate-related incidents that have occurred over campus the past four years. In 2014, a student was expelled for drawing a swastika in a Big Haus dorm. In 2016, a student was expelled for drawing a swastika in the Farside dorm. In 2017, a noose was found hanging in the Stood.
The posters feature of picture of Hitler with a large swastika flag hanging in the background, and a line from the Mel Brooks film "The Producers" written on it.
"No matter what the thoughts were behind this act, it is wrong," Rabbi Ben Shefter, an educator for Westchester Hillel who works with Purchase Hillel said in a statement. " For those that found this flyer funny or appropriate, please get to know some Jewish people and look for a warm community to show you that this is not the way."
UPDATE: Dec. 11, 12:15 pm
Chief Tucker announced in a campus wide email that UPD has arrested a student as a suspect. The Westchester County District Attorney is pursuing a charge of Aggravated Harassment in the First Degree, according to Tucker.
UPDATE: An arrest has been made. Full details here.