Southeastern PA

DA: Nazi propaganda not classified as hate crime

EAST GREENVILLE, Pa. - A mass mailing of racist letters has many Montgomery County residents speaking out.

The Nazi propaganda was sent to neighborhoods in East Greenville, Red Hill and Upper Perkiomen Tuesday.

People are upset, angry, even afraid. Many want this classified as a hate crime. However, police say while it may be offensive, a crime hasn't been committed.

“They want people to rally around this thing,” said Sean Rudolph, an African American living in East Greenville. 

On Tuesday Rudolph received a White and Proud Nazi propaganda letter in the mail, complete with a swastika and Adolf Hitler quote on the back.

Rudolph isn't alone as four different Nazi hate speech flyers were sent to residents of East Greenville, Red Hill and Upper Perkiomen.

Some were addressed to the head of the household, others more specific.

Upper Perkiomen's Colleen Daley's flyer said 'to the head of the Irish household.' 

“If you are a cat owner they picked cat people, multicultural they picked that out. Drafted and sent to a target in my opinion, she said. 

Wednesday, 69 News spotted several people taking the letters to police.

Natalie Blumberg of East Greenville, who received an anti-Semitic flyer, says while she feels hurt by the message she's not surprised it's being pushed.

“Given the political state we are in right now there is a hateful virus in our country and this is a symptom of that,” she said. 

Many want this to be a hate crime, but the Montgomery County DA says it's not.

“In Pennsylvania you have to have hateful speech or conduct in conjunction with another criminal element, like a specific threat to bodily injury or property crime,” East Greenville Interim Police Chief Andrew Skelton explained. 

Crime or not, Red Hill's Family Care Givers network is already calling for community unity by posting a giant sign saying “Hate Speech is not Free Speech be Kind”.

"Hope it brings the valley together that we beat hate just knowing we can stand together,” Office Manager Jennifer Van Ingen stated.

Police say they do not know who sent the flyers. However there is reference to an alt-right website on them.

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