Suspect Questioned for Vandalism of Vietnam War Memorial in Dorchester
Dorchester, MA– The Vietnam War Memorial located on Morrissey Blvd. in Dorchester was vandalized last week on Thursday afternoon. This is the second time in less than a year that the memorial was exposed to such damage, with the first act of vandalism occurring back in October 2018. This time, the vandal pulled the shrubs and flowers out of the ground, threw the American flags into the creek, and wrote hate graffiti and swastikas on the stones. On Saturday, a 33-year-old suspect, whose name is not being released immediately, was taken into custody and sent for a mental health evaluation.
Back in October, the Vietnam War Memorial on Morrissey Blvd. was subject to vandalism, too. The person who committed the crime threw bricks at the gravestones and ripped several American flags out of the ground. The Massachusetts flag was taken down off its poll; trash was spread out all over it. This incident resulted in thousands of dollars of damage. After the incident, UMass Boston officials (who are responsible for the maintenance of the memorial) installed security cameras, which helped them to get a visual on the person responsible for yesterday’s acts of vandalism.
Just days before Memorial Day, the shrubbery and flowers were ripped, the flags were cut, and the stones were marked. Swastikas were present on some stones. Joe Zinck, the memorial administrator, stated to CBS Boston: "We put up 100-125 flags all around memorial and around the flagpole. They were all torn up and thrown into the creek. For somebody to come and do this, they have to be a very angry, deranged, violent person to do it."
The Vietnam War Memorial in Dorchester includes the names of 80 Vietnam War veterans. Many family members and nearby residents are devastated at the events that took place yesterday afternoon, asking what could have motivated this crime in the days before Memorial Day.