The crime happened overnight Sunday in a northeast Nampa subdivision. A longtime resident came out late Monday morning to discover someone had dumped white paint over her Toyota RAV4, crudely scrawling “Go Back” in paint on one of the windows.
“We’re investigating it as a possible hate crime,” Nampa Police Sgt. Tim Riha said Tuesday. No suspect has yet been identified.
The woman is initially from Nigeria but has been in the U.S. for many years, including about 14 years in the 16000 block of North Barrymore Drive, Riha said. The neighborhood is south of Cherry Lane and west of North Idaho Center Boulevard.
In addition to dumping paint, the vandal or vandals smashed windows with a crowbar and damaged the car’s radio and air conditioner, Riha said. It happened some time after 9:30 p.m. Sunday, likely in the middle of the night, he said.
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Nampa police will consult the FBI to see if it meets federal hate crime criteria, he said, in which case the federal agency would lead the investigation. If not, Nampa police could still choose to pursue it as a hate crime, he said.
No determination had been made as of Tuesday, and the estimated cost of repairing the damage was not available.
Anyone with information about the crime is asked to call Nampa police at 465-2257 or Crime Stoppers at 343-COPS.