Family wonders if broken gravestones were anti-Semitic acts

Family wonders if broken gravestones were anti-Semitic acts

Police are investigating what family members think could be anti-Semitic vandalism at Oak Grove Cemetery in Oak Grove, Minn. Anoka County Sheriff's officials say vandalism of this nature isn't unheard of, although it is pretty rare.

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Lynn Peterson's husband Bob died from a heart attack last November, and he was buried next to their son, Jesse, who was killed in a car crash two years ago at age 32.

"He was the light of my life," Peterson said of her husband. "First time I met him he told me he was 285 pounds of raw steel and sex appeal. and I laughed."

Sometime Saturday night or early Sunday morning, vandals knocked over their granite and marble headstones. Investigators say it looks like whoever did it skidded off the road and hit the headstones accidentally, but Peterson fears they were targeted because both headstones have the Star of David prominently featured on them.

"If it was an intentional act, we see this type of vandalism from time to time with mailboxes and such, but it's really despicable to go into a cemetery and purposely desecrate gravestones. That takes it to another level of depravity," Anoka County Sheriff's Office Cmdr. Paul Sommer said.

Police found debris from an orange or bronze colored passenger car, which matches the description of a car seen intentionally hitting mailboxes in nearby St. Francis.

Police are asking anyone who has seen an orange or bronze-colored passenger car with front end damage to call them at (763) 323-5000.

"They are two people who made lots of friends. I don't see how my grandpa could have made any enemies to do something like that. I feel like it could have been a mistake, or has to do with the Star of David. I feel like someone should come forward," grandson Jack Johnson said.

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