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U. Delaware student faces hate crime charge in alleged Holocaust memorial vandalism

University: Student banned from campus

A University of Delaware student is facing hate crime and other charges after authorities say she admitted to vandalizing a Holocaust memorial display on campus.

Student Jenna Kandeel, 23, was charged this week with a hate crime, criminal mischief, and disorderly conduct, according to a news release from the Delaware Department of Justice.

Allegedly, Kandeel damaged several flags in the Holocaust memorial display May 8 on the public university’s campus in Newark, the release stated.

University of Delaware Police arrested Kandeel after witnesses said she damaged the flags and made “vulgar statements about the Jewish community and the Holocaust,” according to the release.

Police said Kandeel later admitted to the vandalism.

Kandeel, an undergraduate student, also is banned from campus, according a statement from university President Dennis Assanis.

“Such abhorrent incidents have no place on our campus. Any acts of discrimination, racism, violence or destructive behavior that are directed at any group and threaten the wellbeing of our community will be addressed immediately,” Assanis said.

State Attorney General Kathy Jennings said in the news release the vandalism should be a “wake-up” call to society about antisemitism.

“We have a proud history of protecting free speech in this country, including and especially political dissent,” Jennings said. “But we need to be lucid enough to recognize the daylight — miles of it, in this case — between protest and hate.”

This week, a new display was set up on campus with pro-Palestinian flags and signs that read “Free Palestine,” FOX 29 reported.

The incident last week is the fourth vandalism targeting a Jewish display on campus since April, the Newark Post reported. Another flag display marking the six-month anniversary of the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attack also was vandalized three times, according to the report.

University police said they did investigate the April incidents, but “no arrests were announced,” the report stated.

The Jewish campus group UD Hillel expressed sadness about the April vandalism in a statement on Facebook.

“Thankfully, UDPD responded quickly to the situation, and the university sent out a strong and supportive message to the UD community. Our Jewish community is strong,” the organization stated.

MORE: U. Maryland Jewish community calls for ‘immediate action’ after ‘Holocaust 2.0’ chalking

IMAGE: FOX 29 screenshot

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About the Author
Micaiah Bilger is an assistant editor at The College Fix.