Oak Park police announced today that they have identified a juvenile as a person of interest in connection to an incident at Oak Park and River Forest High School involving the distribution of an anti-Semitic image. 

On Friday morning, someone “AirDropped” the image of a swastika from somewhere in the high school’s auditorium to students’ cell phones during a Tradition of Excellence ceremony, according to an email sent to families today from Karin Sullivan, the district’s communications director.

Police said that they’ve identified the juvenile after working with high school officials and security staff, adding that they “expect to interview the juvenile today and work with the Cook County State’s Attorney to determine if charges are warranted.”

Police said that the image led to a second incident, “when a student reportedly told a parent two students were talking about shooting up the school, prompting the parent to contact police. The report turned out to be a misunderstanding.” 

Oak Park police stated that they are working witih other law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, to investigate the incident, which is the latest in a string of racist and anti-Semitic images to have been discovered on OPRF’s campus within the last few weeks. Police said that they’ve increased their presence around campus since the first instance of anti-Semitic graffiti was discovered on Nov. 2. 

“Students, parents and high school staff are understandably on edge given these incidents,” said Interim Police Chief LaDon Reynolds in the statement. “I want to assure them and the entire community that the Oak Park Police and our network of law enforcement agencies across the region are focused on bringing such troubling incidents to an end.”

Anyone with information is asked to call the Oak Park Police Department at 708.386.3800. Information may be provided anonymously by calling 708.434.1636 or online at www.oak-park.us/crimetip.

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