Tempe woman fearful after car vandalized with antisemitic slur
Tempe, AZ – A Tempe woman has decided to move out of her apartment complex after the word “kike” was painted on the side of her car after a parking dispute.
Ariella Titus, a Jewish woman who requested a pseudonym in fear of retaliation from the vandal, has a designated parking spot at an apartment complex in west Tempe near Chandler. On Feb. 22, a white Kia Optima was illegally parked in her spot and the apartment management company had the car towed. Later that day, her neighbors notified her that her car had been defaced.
In addition to the slur, her tires were slashed, there were traces of garbage on her car and her Israeli stickers were torn off. Titus guessed that the stickers were what caused the vandal to write the slur.
“I was so afraid that I told my husband that we needed to leave and we called my mother-in-law to stay with her,” Titus said. “We packed up everything and our baby and left, because I was afraid that they were going to come into our apartment and hurt us.”
Tempe Police Department officers came to investigate and were provided a description of the alleged vandal by the apartment company’s security guard. Titus also posted that description to the neighborhood app Nextdoor, which drew a response saying that a man matching the same description, who also owned a white Kia Optima, broke a window and slashed the tires of another car in Tempe a few weeks earlier.