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Teen vandal who spray-painted swastikas on graves gets probation

Dominic M. Koca said that he committed the crime so he could “be known for something.”

St. Mary’s Cemetery in Champaign, Ill. Credit: Courtesy.
St. Mary’s Cemetery in Champaign, Ill. Credit: Courtesy.

A man who defaced nine graves with swastikas and racist language pleaded guilty and received a plea deal of two years probation.

Law enforcement arrested Dominic M. Koca, 18, last fall at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Champaign, Ill. He admitted that he had vandalized the tombstones and said he did so to reportedly “incite the public by committing the crimes.”

Koca’s probation will also require participation in an anti-hate-crimes educational program; mandatory psychiatric treatment; 200 hours of public service work in 20 months; and a prohibition against consuming alcohol, marijuana or illegal drugs.

A doctor who examined Koca said that the teen showed signs of psychosis and claimed to hear persistent voices which told him he was a Nazi. He also reportedly experienced intrusive thoughts of racism and antisemitism. Koca has previously received a diagnosis of a complex neuro-developmental disability.

Koca had said the war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip had intensified his antisemitic feelings and that he committed the crime so he could “be known for something.”

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