Spokane police arrest man in connection to Nazi graffiti

Police in Spokane, Washington, have arrested a man in connection with the defacing of a synagogue with swastikas earlier this month.

Police say they arrested 44-year-old Raymond Bryant of suburban Airway Heights on Thursday for suspicion of malicious harassment and malicious mischief, both felonies.

The Spokesman-Review reports the swastikas were discovered on Feb. 8 painted on one side of the building and on a Holocaust memorial there.

The police department collected paint samples from the building, and surveillance footage showed a lone man wearing gloves and a mask at the scene.

The newspaper reported that at a Black Lives Matter protest in September, Bryant carried a poster with a large swastika advertising his neo-Nazi organization. The newspaper reported Bryant said he is a "proud Nazi."

After his arrest, Bryant told police he was also responsible for distributing anti-Semitic flyers across Spokane recently.

Spokane Mayor Nadine Woodward said the symbols "desecrate a place of worship and a memorial to those whose lives were lost during a hateful time in world history."