TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Graffiti found on the walls of a Hillsborough County school Monday morning is now cleaned up.
Multiple racist and obscene comments were spray painted on the walls at Leto High School in Tampa. A large sign next to the football field was also defaced with explicit language.
8 On Your Side is told that students first saw the graffiti littered over walls in multiple sections of the school on Monday morning.
The sheriff’s office is now investigating. At last check, it was not known if students are involved, but district officials hope security camera footage will lead to the culprits.
“It’s very concerning, of course, whenever something like this happens,” said Tanya Arja, with Hillsborough Schools.
Arja explained the district scrambled to remove the vandalism as quickly as possible, but not before some of the images made their way to social media.
The graffiti included things like “whites” and “blacks only” painted above drinking fountains. While some of the images were just crude and childish, it’s the racially-charged graffiti that has some parents worried.
Cynthia Avilez has an 11th grader at Leto and says she wasn’t aware of much racial tension on campus.
“My daughter has a lot of friends that are African American, Hispanic, whites,” Avilez said. “All the kids get along really well and mesh really well.”
The vandals may have briefly made their mark but the district has a message in return.
“We want to make sure our schools are safe places,” Arja said. “We don’t tolerate anything like that.”