Swastika, graffiti near San Jose dental clinic investigated as hate crime

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Swastika and other graffiti scrawled across the pavement at a San Jose dental clinic are being investigated as a hate crime.

It’s the first time the clinic has been the target of hate.

“Of course, I am shocked and hurt by this,” Dr. Mohsena Ahmad said.

Dr. Ahmad arrived at her dental office on Union Avenue in the Cambrian district early Monday to find a swastika on the pavement.

There was also what she believes to be a reference to the Ku Klux Klan and other hateful images scrawled across the parking lot.

“I was really, really surprised and shocked and stunned and petrified all at the same time,” Dr. Ahmad said.

Dr. Ahmad, who gave cell phone and surveillance video to police, believes she is being targeted because she is a Muslim.

She met with detectives on Tuesday afternoon and pointed out where the latest graffiti was found and also two previous incidents where someone started a fire and broke a window at her office.

“I am appalled by this because San Jose is a very diverse community, and I feel this is not only a threat to me but a threat to the entire community,” Dr. Ahmad said.

Police are treating the case as a hate crime.

The Council on American Islamic Relations says such hate crimes were up 8 percent last year in California, adding that the numbers may be higher still because many victims are afraid to come forward.

But not Dr. Ahmad.

“If you are a minority, be a little more vigilant but don’t be afraid,” Ahmad said. “This is my country. I am an American, and I’m not going anywhere. I won’t be stopped by this.”

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