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Hate incident reported at Montgomery Co. high school

WASHINGTON — Teachers and parents of students at Winston Churchill High School in Potomac, Maryland, received a letter Tuesday advising them of a hate incident at the school on March 2. Local police have also been notified about what happened.

A student whose class was in the midst of studying the Holocaust received an anti-Semitic text, according to Officer Rick Goodale, public information officer for Montgomery county police.

In a message to the Churchill community, principal Joan Benz said the text was sent via a spoofing app that provides a cloak of secrecy by displaying a bogus phone number.

In her message, Benz said, “hurtful comments regarding religion, race, gender, gender identity or ethnicity will not be tolerated.”

The school resource officer is conducting an investigation.

It’s not the first hate incident at the school, which has been named among the top 100 high schools in the nation by U.S. News and World Report: Just three months ago, a “whites only” sign was posted on one of the school’s bathrooms.

There were 62 hate crimes last year in Montgomery County, including incidents in the schools — a 17 percent increase over 2015.

The Jewish Community Center in Rockville received a bomb threat Tuesday morning. Also, the Islamic Community Center in Silver Spring, the Islamic Education Center in Potomac and the Charles Smith Jewish Day School all recently received bomb threats.


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