Highland Park’s ‘Home is Where We Make It’ mural defaced days after completion

Highland Park Police are investigating after a mural meant to be a sign of welcome to the community was defaced overnight.

The mural painted by Amrisa Nirajan at 75 Raritan Ave. was completed on Wednesday. Police believe it was vandalized between 7 and 10 p.m. Friday.

The Star of David and the words USA were sprayed on the face of a woman wearing a hijab.

News 12 New Jersey I was told there were also pieces of paper with USA written on it stuck to the wall paint.

The names of the artist and collaborators on the lower left have also been spray painted.

News 12 New Jersey spoke to the artist who said she was racially harassed while working on the mural. She said she was asked questions like why there were no white faces on the artwork.

Several organizations came together for the installation titled “Home is Where We Make It”.

The mural was meant to be a beacon that welcomes refugees and asylum seekers to the community.

The artist, as well as the other collaborators, have decided, for the moment, not to paint over the graffiti.

Highland Park Police are asking anyone with information to come forward. They ask if anyone who lives or works in the area and has cameras outside of their business or your home to contact them.