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Ogdensburg police arrest teen for graffiti on several city buildings

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An Ogdensburg youth has been arrested for spray-painting four buildings with an antisemitic symbol last month.

Andrew J. Spearance, 17, of 8 Oak St., arrested Thursday at 2:50 p.m. for making graffiti, a misdemeanor. He is set to answer the charge May in city court.

Ogdensburg police said Mr. Spearance on April 14 spray-painted an apparent slogan that consisted of a swastika and “B.H. Of 88 The Boyz” on the exterior of four buildings. They were Center for Sight, 420 Ford St., the former Oscar’s restaurant, 1222 Ford St., the Toobros kosher cheese plant, 30 Main St., and the office of The Journal and Advance News, 308 Isabella St.

Police said the graffiti was not tied to any organized group, although they noted Mr. Spearance formed several years ago with other juveniles a group called The Brotherhood. Detective Shawn Shaver said police interviewed one youth who allegedly started the group, and he identified Mr. Spearance as the one who committed the graffiti.

Police were also told by the youth that The Brotherhood had agreed to disband.

Mr. Shaver said there was nothing gang-oriented about The Brotherhood.

“It was a group of individuals,” he said.

Mr. Shaver said Mr. Spearance was asked about the swastika and any potential white supremacist connotations, and claimed he wasn’t being racist. Nor, he said, was there any connection between that and the Brotherhood moniker.

“It was just something that popped into his head,” Mr. Shaver said. “He said he wasn’t trying to be racist. Just being stupid, I guess.”

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