Conn. officer victim of hate crime

By John Nickerson
The Stamford Advocate

NORWALK, Conn. - A vehicle belonging to a black police officer was vandalized Halloween night by someone who scratched a racial epithet into the side of his car, police said.

Police were investigating the incident as a hate crime, police Chief Harry Rilling said.

Patrol Officer Kenny Fludd, who marked 20 years on the job earlier this month, discovered the damage to his sedan at his home on Surrey Drive early yesterday, Sgt. Andre Velez said.

Fludd, who was working a traffic detail Wednesday night, told detectives that the word was etched into the right rear fender and door of his car probably between 8 p.m. and midnight on Wednesday, Velez said.

During the evening, someone came into his yard and knocked over his garbage and may have written the racial epithet on his car at that time, Velez said.

Through Velez, Fludd declined to comment on the incident.

"This guy is a good officer. He has a big heart for people, and I've known the man since he has become a police officer," Velez said. "In this day and age, to have this happen to someone who helps people of all races and is a genuine good Samaritan shows this action was borne out of racism and hate."

A knife or screwdriver may have been used to damage the vehicle, Velez said.

"It is totally reprehensible, unconscionable and a terrible thing," Rilling said of the vandalism. "He is a police officer who is out there doing his job well, and it is sad that someone would do that. We will investigate this like any hate crime."

Copyright 2007 Southern Connecticut Newspapers, Inc.

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